Over the last five months, Georgia Lionhearts has been actively preparing for this January’s series of repeat webinars on Training on Strangulation Assault. When Lion Heart Society was founded in 2014, the very first pilot program was established in Athens Clarke County, Georgia. Back then, the task force expressed that their biggest need was for training around a law change making strangulation a felony. Georgia Lionhearts awarded a program grant to the Domestic Violence Task Force of Athens Clarke and Oconee Counties to underwrite the training. More than 100 volunteer hours went into preparation for this presentation, from Georgia Lionhearts volunteers, from experts providing presentation, and from the DVTF in promoting the event. This has been a fun group effort! Today we kick of the training for police, medical professionals, lawyers, law enforcement and others who will attend one of 12 presentations by three amazing experts every Tuesday, all month. At the time of this writing, we have more than 135 individuals signed up for the training on strangulation assault, including individuals from two military bases. While we likely will not support every partnered task force with individualized training, I am so proud to see this one take place. As a charity, this was our first grant commitment. It is an honor to work together with Joanne Prittie at Project Safe, Inc. of Athens, GA, with Attorney General C.R. Chisholm, with District Attorney Ken Mauldin and assistant Shannon Saulters, and with Tangela Beard of Project Safe, whose tireless work to her community is unsung heroism, and whose guidance in navigating our efforts has been priceless. I am also grateful for the amazing work of Garrett Bowers, Lion Heart Society’s magician technical editor.

Founding and growing this charity is a humbling, rewarding experience. In this season of Firsts, today is a day for celebration.