Promoting Wellness & Healthy Relationships

Whenever our participants go through crises, AFJ makes sure they’re not alone and that we provide them with the necessary resources.

During the pandemic, many participants at Avenues for Justice (AFJ) expressed a sudden increase in anxiety and stress levels.

AFJ responded by offering weekly group mental health workshops to teach youth about the effects of trauma, recognizing triggers, coping strategies for anger and stress, and accessing resources. A mental wellness overview workshop is now required for all participants, with follow-up workshops for those who require additional support.

However, we’re already adding a new series of workshops to promote healthy relationships, due to the increase in domestic and partner violence incidents citywide during the quarantine.

These new workshops will focus on gender appropriate content as they relate to overall wellness.

The “system” can be frightening for survivors of domestic violence. If a victim calls 911 for intervention, especially when children are involved – they could immediately be sent to a homeless shelter even if they are the leaseholder. This move is made to protect everyone involved, but it can bring instability at an already stressful time.  In some cases, a survivor could lose custody of their children to foster care system because of an open domestic violence case.  As a result, they often try to navigate through their dating violence alone, instead of reporting incidents or calling 911.

AFJ has been utilizing quality third party services and referral agencies who specialize in domestic and partner violence. Court Advocates advocate for our participants in Family Court when orders of protection are needed or there are custody issues.  Whenever our participants go through crises, AFJ makes sure they’re not alone and that we provide them with the necessary resources.

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