October is recognized as Domestic Violence Awareness Month, and it’s a time to show support for the men, women and children who are dealing with abuse, trying to stay safe and working to rebuild their lives.
“Calls to our 24/7 hotline have increased nearly 50% since the start of the pandemic and continue to hold steady, further demonstrating the prevalence of domestic violence in our communities,” says Julye Myner, PhD, executive director of Center for Hope & Safety, Bergen County. “We have seen a significant increase in all of our emergency services, especially safe housing, as well as an increased need for continued support services for adults and children who are victims or witnesses of domestic abuse. Throughout Domestic Violence Awareness Month our goal is to provide opportunities for the community to stand together against domestic violence in Bergen County and educate our community about domestic abuse and prevention to help break the cycle of violence.”
Calls to Center for Hope & Safety continue to remain steady, averaging 100 calls per week. The call volume coupled with a continued surge in demand for safe housing further demonstrates the prevalence of domestic violence in our communities.
There are several ways you can show solidarity this month and support those who are in need.
October 1
Hush No More Walk
Lenny Green of WBLS’s “The Quiet Storm” will lead a Family Day at Mulberry Commons Park after an awareness walk travels from Military Park to City Hall in support of victims of domestic violence and sexual assault. My Sister’s Lighthouse Resource Center is a nonprofit organization located in the heart of Newark.
Stand With Sam
Lincoln Park, Jersey City
Two years ago, Samantha Irizarry was a victim of an attempted murder-suicide. Although she survived, she suffered traumatic injuries that include spinal cord and brain injury as well as paralysis from the shoulders down, cognitive impairments and neurological and respiratory complications. Funds from this walk around Lincoln Park will be allocated toward her medical expenses incurred thus far, and future expenses that will not be covered by her insurance.
October 6
The Art of Survival Annual Reception
The Art School at Old Church, Demarest
The 9th annual Art of Survival Annual Reception celebrates the fantastic art created by the
Bergen County domestic violence and sexual assault survivors who participated in The Art of Survival workshops provided by Center for Hope & Safety will display their artwork throughout October. Oct. 6 is the opening night and reception for the exhibit.
October 9
Williams Center, Rutherford
This beer and wine tasting event honors the memory of Michele Sabia, who was a teacher at Rutherford’s Washington School at the time of her death in 2016, when she was fatally shot by her husband. An art exhibit featuring the courageous expressions of survivors of domestic violence and sexual assault will also be on display.
Pure Mixed Martial Arts, Rockaway
Female law enforcement officers are partnering with female survivors of domestic violence to take back their power.
October 12
Van Saun County Park, Paramus
Honor victims, survivors, family of survivors and community members by “lighting up the night” against domestic violence. Raise awareness and remember lives lost due to domestic violence.
October 15
Moving Beyond Abuse 5K
Johnson Park, Piscataway
Support relief services for those affected by domestic violence by taking place in this 5K walk or run. There will be music, food and kids’ activities after the race.
October 22
Domestic Violence Awareness Workshop
Monumental Baptist Church, Jersey City
Black church leaders and laity will receive training to support the safety and emotional, psychological and spiritual well-being of survivors of domestic violence and their children.
Pampering for Prevention
Come out for an afternoon of pampering and networking with hardworking women while you enjoy gentle skin care facials, lip treatments and hand treatments. There will be refreshments and raffles while you listen to an empowerment discussion. Your ticket purchase will be used to donate items and funds to a local domestic violence shelter. Please wear purple in support of domestic violence victims.
October 29
Van Saun County Park, Paramus (Parking Lot 9, Pavilion I)
This 3K walk provides an opportunity for the community to show support of local and national social change efforts to end domestic violence.
Rally and Walk Against Domestic Violence
Woodbridge City Hall, Woodbridge
Throughout all of October, Woodbridge Township will RISE (Rally, Inspire, Support, Empower) those affected by domestic violence. On Oct. 29, the culmination will be a walk an in-person closing rally. There will be guest speaking from local politicians and school board members, survivors, legal advocates and trauma coaches.

See What Our Readers Are Saying