PRESS RELEASE – A Youth Active Response Team (ART) program targeting secondary school students was recently held by the Division of Gender Relations as a means to reduce incidents of dating, domestic and gender-based violence.
The program aims to educate about healthy relationships, promote healthier approaches to relationships and conflicts, increase students’ understanding of teen dating abuse, enable students to reach out to provide support and help to a friend or family member who may be involved in an abusive relationship, increase help-seeking behavior among students involved in abusive dating relationships, and increase students’ knowledge on the fundamentals of human rights and gender equality.
Research indicates that children who grow up witnessing domestic violence or are themselves victims of any form of gender-based violence experience a wide range of age-dependent negative effects.
Most experts believe that children who are raised in abusive homes learn that violence is an effective way to resolve conflicts and problems. They may replicate the violence they witnessed as children in their teen and adult relationships, and parenting experiences.
Teens experiencing dating abuse are more likely to tell their friends than anyone else. With this approach, the Division of Gender Relations expects to empower teens to evaluate their interactions and discern whether or not a relationship is healthy and right for them.