Brandman University staff and students at the Palm Desert campus participated in the national “Peace Over Violence” Denim Day rape prevention education campaign on April 24. Peace Over Violence asks community members, elected officials, businesses and students to make a social statement with their fashion statement on Denim Day to wear jeans as a visible means of protest against misconceptions that surround sexual assault.
Peace Over Violence, (formerly LACAAW), established in 1971 by pioneering feminist activists, is a sexual and domestic violence, stalking, child abuse and youth violence prevention center headquartered in Los Angeles and dedicated to building healthy relationships, families and communities free from sexual, domestic and interpersonal violence. www.peaceoverviolence.org
The Coachella Valley Sexual Assault Services (CVSAS) educated its volunteers about the importance of Denim Day. Brandman staff members; Chantal Rios, Academic Advisor, Undergraduate, Graduate and Single Subject Programs, Sarrah Dickerson, Office Assistant and Norma Gorwin, Faculty Services Coordinator are CVSAS volunteers and participated in the campaign. They were encouraged to inform others at Brandman Palm Desert to continue to spread the word about this national rape prevention campaign.
The Coachella Valley Sexual Assault Services is a local organization offering support and services to survivors of sexual and domestic violence. It serves as a means for victims of sexual assault to connect with advocates, counselors and/or crisis hotline representatives in the moments after they are violated. Services are not limited to recent victims of sexual assault, often adults who were molested as children call into the hotline if they have haunting, recurring memories of being formerly assaulted. This particular division of the agency covers the entire Coachella Valley. Individual and group counseling is available. The families of victims are also serviced.
“It takes a lot of time in order to be an effective volunteer for this program, but it is a beautiful feeling to know that we can impact the life of a victim with something so simple as being their ROCK of stability amidst all the chaos going on around them,” explains Bradman’s, Chantal Rios. Brandman students pursuing degrees in Social Work are earning required observation hours and at the CVSAS.