In 2011, the church attended by BACHAC member Terri Vines developed a program that included information on domestic violence–physical, mental, and sexual abuse. Vines and BACHAC then worked together to create a program on domestic violence in 2012.
Domestic violence is a difficult issue to address, Vines says, because in the African American community, “women feel that they have the capacity and responsibility to deal with things; they can ‘handle it’ without assistance. If a woman comes to the realization that she needs care, it can be shocking to those around her.”
African American women are strong, but part of what is required is to use innate abilities, skills, and talents to seek out resources that will help them. Once women recognize and get out of an abusive relationship, they also want to know how they avoid getting back into that situation again.
“It’s important,” Vines continues, “for us to stress that women must be proactive, not just reactive, in this situation.” BACHAC believes awareness-raising events about domestic violence should be ongoing, and has effectively garnered the support of local churches to ensure they are intimately involved–with voice and vote–in scheduling these events.