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HPU to host The ARK’s candlelight vigil for victims of domestic abuse

Empty Shoes displayBROWNWOOD – October 11, 2018 – Brownwood’s The ARK (Advocacy, Respect, Kindness) Domestic Violence and Sexual Assault Shelter will host a candlelight vigil, open to the public, at Howard Payne University’s Bettie and Robert Girling Center for Social Justice. The event, to be held Thursday, October 18, at 6 p.m., is a time to honor the victims of domestic abuse, celebrate the survivors and announce the community’s commitment to ending domestic violence. Survivors of domestic violence will also speak at the event.

October is Domestic Violence Awareness Month. The vigil is held at HPU each year in conjunction with The ARK’s Empty Shoes display. Each pair of shoes in the exhibit represents a Central Texas individual who has died as a result of domestic violence. The display will open on Monday, October 15, and be available until the afternoon of Friday, October 19.

According to information provided by The ARK, one in four women and one in seven men aged 18 and older in the United States have been the victim of severe physical violence by an intimate partner. Additionally, more than 12 million people in the United States over the course of a year are victims of rape, physical violence or stalking by an intimate partner.

“Domestic violence is a social problem that affects both men and women of any socioeconomic class, culture or ethnicity,” said Rachel Derrington, assistant professor of social work and director of HPU’s social work program. “As a community we can commit to ending domestic violence by increasing awareness, assisting victims and their children and teaching individuals how to recognize healthy relationships.”

For more information, contact The ARK at 325-643-2699.

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Cutline: The ARK will host the Empty Shoes display and a candlelight vigil at HPU. Each pair of shoes in the display represents a Central Texas individual who has died as a result of domestic violence.

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