Reflecting on Our History and Celebrating Our Future This Fall
September 1, 2022
As we head into fall, I am excited about everything the National Network to End Domestic Violence (NNEDV) has planned in the coming months—celebrating our partnerships, reflecting on our history, and commemorating Domestic Violence Awareness Month (DVAM). As we look to the end of this year and the start of a new one, we celebrate all we have accomplished so far and look to the future with hope for the continued change we will drive together.
The next few months are filled with plenty of activities and ways for you to get involved with NNEDV and to support survivors. From an exciting Kering Foundation gala in September, to the annual DVAM Week of Action in October, and beyond, we invite you to learn more and join us.
The Kering Foundation’s Caring for Women Dinner
Ever since its creation in 2008, the Kering Foundation has focused on supporting women impacted by violence. Since 2019, NNEDV has been honored as one of the Foundation’s long-term partners. This partnership helps us to strengthen our relationship with our membership of the 56 U.S. state and territorial coalitions, who play an integral role in policy change and social change at the state and local levels, while also boosting our efforts to drive change at the federal level.
The Foundation will be hosting its inaugural Caring for Women Dinner on September 15 in New York City. The event will be hosted by Anderson Cooper and co-chaired by Salma Hayek Pinault, François-Henri Pinault, Gisele Bündchen, LaTanya Richardson Jackson, Samuel L. Jackson, Julie Mehretu, and Gloria Steinem. All proceeds will benefit NNEDV, the Ms. Foundation for Women, the Global Fund for Women, and the Jordan River Foundation. In particular, this funding will help support WomensLaw.org and the WomensLaw Email Hotline, which provide critically needed free legal information for survivors, their loved ones, and advocates.
In a statement to Yahoo!, François-Henri Pinault (chairman and CEO of Kering as well as chairman of the Kering Foundation) said, “Kering and its Houses stand in active opposition to all forms of violence against women and, now more than ever, the Kering Foundation is resolute in its mission to create a world where women can live freely in physical and psychological safety. The Caring for Women Dinner represents a milestone in our 14-year history of partnering with front-line organizations that support women survivors to escape violence and rebuild their lives.”
NNEDV is looking forward to the Caring for Women Dinner and we are grateful for this milestone in our partnership with the Foundation.
The Violence Against Women Act Anniversary
The Violence Against Women Act (VAWA) creates and supports comprehensive, cost-effective responses to domestic violence, sexual assault, dating violence and stalking. The original VAWA, passed in 1994 and authored by then-Senator Joseph R. Biden, was the first federal legislation acknowledging domestic violence and sexual assault as crimes and provided federal resources to encourage community-coordinated responses to combating violence against women.
Did you know that NNEDV was created in tandem with VAWA’s passage? Originally known as the Domestic Violence Coalition on Public Policy, we began in 1990 as a small group of domestic violence advocates, programs, and coalitions advancing federal legislation, including VAWA. This group became known NNEDV in 1995, and our policy work (along with other signature projects) continues to this day.
On September 13, we’re commemorating VAWA’s 28th anniversary, recognizing the ways each VAWA reauthorization has built upon existing protections and programs to better meet survivors’ needs. The most recent VAWA reauthorization provides survivors, the thousands of local programs that serve them, and communities with much-needed resources for housing, legal assistance, alternatives to criminal responses, and prevention programming. It also includes new economic justice provisions and bolsters access for survivors of all genders by strengthening non-discrimination laws and creating an LGBTQ services program. The law also restores tribal jurisdiction, allowing tribes to hold non-Native perpetrators accountable, improves existing housing protections and increases access to emergency and short-term housing, and creates dedicated investments in culturally specific service providers to ensure survivors of color are supported. NNEDV was honored to attend a White House celebration for the reauthorization in March with President Biden.
The NNEDV Public Policy team and coalitions nationwide have worked very hard to pass and improve this law with every successive reauthorization. NNEDV is proud of VAWA’s progress over the past 28 years, and we’re committed to continuing to make the law better and more comprehensive to improve the responses for all survivors in need.
Domestic Violence Awareness Month and #GiveForDV
The first Domestic Violence Awareness Month (DVAM) was observed in October 1987, and Congress officially designated the month of October as DVAM in 1989. For the past 35 years, DVAM has represented an opportunity to unite advocates, engage our communities, and recommit to our work to support survivors.
Every October, NNEDV joins with our partners, supporters, and allies across the country to recognize DVAM. This year, in partnership with the Pennsylvania Coalition Against Domestic Violence (PCADV), we are bringing back and enhancing the #Every1KnowsSome1 DVAM campaign we launched in 2021, along with the #GiveForDV giving coalition for Giving Tuesday on November 29.
We are so proud of our work on this nationally recognized cause-based giving campaign, which is now in its third year. The goal of these joint initiatives is to raise awareness, increase financial support and volunteer efforts, and deepen community engagement by connecting our work nationwide. Coalitions and local programs are critical to building #GiveForDV into a larger movement to mobilize charitable support for domestic and sexual violence programs at the local, state, territorial, and national level.
And it wouldn’t be October if we didn’t commemorate our annual DVAM Week of Action. Join us October 17-23 for a week packed with activities and ways to get involved. From our Twitter Chat Tuesday inspired by the National Resource Center on Domestic Violence’s DVAM theme (“No Survivor Justice Without Racial Justice”), to my personal favorite—watching social media fill with purple on Purple Thursday—we hope you’ll join us in any way you can.
We’re going to make this DVAM and Giving Tuesday our best yet, and we encourage all coalitions, programs, allied organizations, and individuals to join us. Organizations can register online by September 30, and everyone can check out the toolkit and get ready for October. We want to show up, together, to uplift all of our work and magnify our impact more than we can do on our own.
I hope you will join us this fall. You make our work possible. Please consider making a gift to NNEDV today. Together, we can create the future we want: one in which domestic violence no longer exists.
For peace and safety,
Deborah J. Vagins
NNEDV President and CEO