October is Domestic Violence Awareness Month and Rachel Coalition, with its partners, will be hosting the fourth annual Domestic Violence Candlelight Vigil on Thursday, Oct. 11, 6:30-7:30 p.m. at the Livingston Memorial Oval in Livingston. This event raises awareness of domestic violence and educates the community on services Rachel Coalition and other local agencies offer to victims.
At last year’s Emmy Awards, Nicole Kidman won the Outstanding Lead Actress in a Limited Series award for her role in “Big Little Lies,” where she played a woman in an abusive marriage. While accepting the award she stated the following: “We’ve shone a light on domestic abuse, it is a complicated, insidious disease. It exists far more than we allow ourselves to know…. It is filled with shame and secrecy, and by you acknowledging me with this award, it shines a light on it even more.”
What is domestic violence? It can be physical abuse that leads to tragic situations. Most often it starts as isolation, withholding of money, verbal, sexual, emotional, and/or psychological abuse that is not seen by others. These forms of abuse leave the victim, and in many cases, the children, with deep emotional bruises. Educating our youth and adults of the warning signs and what defines a healthy relationship will help us break the cycle of domestic abuse.
Rachel Coalition, a division of Jewish Family Service serving Morris, Essex, and parts of Hudson County, has planned this event with local community partners, including Safe House of Essex County, Essex County Prosecutor’s Office, and Family Justice Center of Newark.
The program includes a musical performance by Soulfege A Cappella of Millburn High School. Political leadership, local law enforcement, domestic violence response team members, and clergy of multiple denominations will be present to honor the victims and survivors.
The larger the crowd, the stronger the voice we make as a community showing that we acknowledge the need to shine a light on domestic abuse and support our neighbors.
We hope to see you at the vigil.
Carol Nelson-Felzenberg, Montville
Robin Polson, Maplewood
Linda Tarr, Pine Brook
Joan Nelson, Montville
Pam Fishman, Millburn
Rachel Coalition fourth annual Candlelight Vigil