Prevention Institute, with funding from the Blue Shield of California Foundation, has launched Safety Through Connection, a new program to catalyze community-based approaches that can help prevent domestic violence. Through the program, five California collaboratives will receive one-year planning and capacity-building grants of $50,000 each to reduce the risk of domestic violence among low-wage workers, rural and tribal communities, immigrants, and other communities that experience high rates of this type of violence.
“We recognize that poor health and domestic violence are driven by many social forces that are influenced by sectors outside of domestic violence or health. As a result, we’re focusing on how these different sectors can collaborate with community to advance health, wellbeing, and safe relationships” said Carolyn Wang Kong, senior program officer at the Blue Shield of California Foundation. “We also want to shift the thinking that domestic violence is a private issue, as it really is a shared issue that is shaped by factors outside the home, with impacts across families and communities.”
“Most people don’t realize the ways that the community determinants of health—things like housing, employment, social norms, and social networks—can increase or decrease the risk of intimate partner violence,” said Lisa Fujie Parks, a director at Oakland-based nonprofit Prevention Institute. “That’s why it’s so important to look at community factors when creating prevention initiatives. By taking a community-level approach to preventing intimate partner violence, we can address the underlying factors that contribute to violence and inequities in who experiences violence.”
The five Safety Through Connection grantees are:
- The Los Angeles Worker Center Network organizes with workers from low-wage industries and their families on issues like increasing the minimum wage and passing paid sick days laws. Partners in the Safety Through Connection collaborative include the CLEAN Carwash Campaign, Restaurant Opportunities Center of Los Angeles, Koreatown Immigrant Workers Alliance, and UCLA Labor Center.
- Based in Humboldt County, The Center at McKinleyville is a proposed one-stop location for services, information, and activities for community members that was created to address disparities in access to health and social services in rural and tribal communities. Partners in the Safety Through Connection collaborative will include McKinleyville Family Resource Center, DHHS Public Health Branch, Humboldt County DHHS, Humboldt County Department of Child Support, Open Door Community Health Centers, Trinidad Rancheria Tribal Social Services, Two Feathers Native American Family Services, and Humboldt State University Social Work Department.
- Based in San Diego, the East African Men and Boys Collaborative focuses on supporting the stability and wellbeing of East African refugee and immigrant youth and families. Partners in the Safety Through Connection collaborative will include African Coalition Workforce, Huda Community Center, Partnership for the Advancement of New Americans, Somali Bantu Community of San Diego, Southern Sudanese Community Center, and United Women of East Africa Support Team.
- The Department of Violence Prevention Steering Committee in Oakland is focused on preventing violence among communities of color, immigrants, and systems-impacted residents in the East Bay. Partners in the Safety Through Connection collaborative will include the City of Oakland, Brotherhood of Elders Network, Bay Area Women Against Rape, Family Violence Law Center, and A Safe Place, among others.
- Cultiva La Salud, based in Fresno, works to improve the health and wellbeing of low-income Latina women in Fresno, Kern, and Stanislaus counties. Partners in the Safety Through Connection collaborative will include Cultiva La Salud, Leadership Council for Justice and Accountability, Building Healthy Communities, Fresno Metro Ministry, Fresno County Department of Public Health, Youth Leadership Institute, Central Valley Health Policy Institute, California Latina Democrats, and Central California Legal Services.
Over the next year, the grantees will identify community-level factors associated with domestic violence and safe relationships; recruit new partners and strengthen existing partnerships across agencies and community groups; and adopt community-level strategies to support safe relationships, foster healing and accountability, and prevent domestic violence. Future funding will be available for the collaboratives that exhibit readiness for implementation.
According to the California Health Interview Survey, 3.5 million Californians have experienced intimate partner violence as an adult.
Prevention Institute is a national nonprofit with offices in Oakland, Los Angeles, and Washington, D.C. Its mission is to build prevention and health equity into key policies and actions at the federal, state, local, and organizational level to ensure that the places where all people live, work, play, and learn foster health, safety, and wellbeing.
Blue Shield of California Foundation is one of the state's largest and most trusted grantmaking organizations. Its mission is to improve the lives of all Californians, particularly the underserved, by making healthcare accessible, effective, and affordable, and by ending domestic violence.
CONTACT: Andrea Buffa, Communications Director, Prevention Institute
email@example.com, cell: 510-325-3653