Salvation Army Hosts Domestic Violence Vigil

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It's not the kind of things the victims usually talk about, but a new case of domestic violence occurs every nine seconds here in the US.
All this month support agencies have been trying to raise awareness of the issue.
But the signs of domestic violence are a lot harder to spot than you might think.

Experts estimate that one in every three women around the world are beaten, coerced into sex or abused at least once in their lives.
Many woman believe they are defenseless to fight back against the cycle of abuse.

The local Salvation Army's Domestic Violence and Rape Crisis Program offers those victims' a choice and is fighting for their voices to be heard.
But often times the signs of domestic violence aren't always visible, hidden by the victim's fear and emotional turmoil.

Pam Martin of the Salvation Army says that, "Domestic violence always starts out loving, starts out loving. Then it starts and gets possessive then it gets isolating, then it gets socially isolating and they isolate you from your friends and your family until you're totally dependent on them."

Wednesday night advocates gathered at Gulf Coast State College for a candlelight vigil to remember the victims that didn't survive and honor those who have.
It was also a chance to inform some of those hidden victims there is help available.

Martin also added, "If we reach one person through this...With the news. We can get them food, we can get them clothing, we can get them shelter and we can find them jobs and move on with their lives."
Many involved in the salvation army's program are themselves domestic violence victims.
And want to help others survive as it affects women, children, and men."

Donna Mooney, who is Salvation Army's Program Coordinator for the Domestic Violence and Rape Prevention Program says "I experienced it personally in my life and it's just rewarding to me to help another woman, encourage her, or any victim, whether it be a man or a woman."

Finally, Martin added "There is hope. And that's what we celebrate tonight. Those survivors that didn't think there was any hope."

If you suspect someone close to you may be a domestic violence victim, or you're a victim yourself, call the Salvation Army Abuse hotline at 1-800-252-2597.