“Thank you for this training, it was very informative. Sadly we had to put everything we learned into practice immediately as we got a strangulation victim at our shelter the next day.”

This is a direct quote from an email I received last week after our webinar presentation of training on strangulation assault. It stopped me cold. What a reminder – the needs are great!

It is our goal to serve those who are working to stop domestic violence, or intimate partner abuse, in their communities. In January, Georgia Lionhearts implemented a grant awarded to the Athens Clarke and Oconee Counties Domestic Violence Task Force. The need they identified for the community, the one they asked for our help to accomplish, was for training on strangulation assault, in light of the 2014 strangulation law change making strangulation a felony instead of a misdemeanor. Training was presented by experts explaining the law and legal implications, and the physiological signs and consequences of strangulation assault on a victim.

Though this grant was originally intended to create free training for the counties that this task force serves, the word spread, eventually reaching throughout the entire state of Georgia. More than 300 registrants signed up for the training, and ultimately more than 250 participants were trained, representing almost as many agencies and organizations. Among others, we trained:

  • an entire school district in south Georgia
  • an entire police department, who will use our training for the current force, and all future officers
  • UGA campus police
  • Cobb County Sheriff’s Office
  • two universities
  • The Salvation Army
  • Department of Defense
  • two military bases, including sergeants and all family agency leads
  • family violence intervention programs
  • shelters
  • hospitals
  • prosecutors and family lawyers all over the state, including Georgia’s Prosecuting Attorney’s Council
  • numerous social workers, therapists, nurses, and psychologists
  • bachelors, masters and PhD candidates pursuing degrees in these various fields

The training was presented by the Athens Clarke and Oconee Counties Domestic Violence Task Force. It was hosted by Project Safe, Inc. of Athens, Georgia, and underwritten by Georgia Lionhearts. We are proud to serve Athens. It is a humbling honor to serve the men and women doing the work to stop violence, and heal families.