MVP challenges others to stand up to gender violence
October 31, 2008
Story and photo by Samantha Smith Outlook Volunteer Daryl Fort, a former football player for the University of Maine, is an imposing figure. He quickly explained, that by using sports icons, men tend to take notice and listen to what they have to say. The Caserma Ederle community invited a representative from Mentors in Violence Prevention to speak at the post chapel. MVP utilizes sports figures to elevate the discussion of gender violence. According to a 2006 Harris Poll, approximately 33 million or 15 percent of all U.S. adults, admit that they were a victim of domestic violence. Furthermore, 6 out of 10 adults claim that they know someone who has experienced domestic violence. Everyone in the room agreed that gender violence is a big problem. They also agreed that each of them has a woman in their lives that they care about, be it a mother, wife, daughter, aunt or niece. Fort made the point that this issue affects us all, not just women. Acknowledging that most men in the audience might be thinking "I\'m a good guy, I don't do those things," Fort called upon them to not only do the right thing in their own lives but to stand up to violence against women. He made the analogy that a good friend may be someone you count on in a fight or on the battlefield, but that the "got your back" mentality shouldn't end there. It should also come into play when you may do something that hurts others. Instead of pointing fingers or assuming participants may be potential perpetrators, MVP takes a "bystander" approach to its trainings to "unlock the leadership that is in all of us" said Fort. Armed with information people can become leaders and role models for others in the community, rather than bystanders. For more information about MVP, check out www.mvpnational.org. To report an incident or just obtain more information about abuse call the following numbers: A'a,!A "Victim Advocacy/Family Advocacy Program Manager 634-7489 or 0444-71-7489 A'a,!A "Sexual Assault Response Coordinator (SARC) 634-6269 or 0444-71-6269. A'a,!A "Health Clinic 634-7484 or 0444-71-7484 A'a,!A "Chaplain 634-7719/7519 or 0444-71-7719/7519 A'a,!A "To report sexual assault or domestic violence call the MP Desk at 634-7233 A'a,!A "(SAFE)or for reporting/victim information call 634-5878(JUST). Soldiers who are aware of an instance of sexual assault should report it immediately. Soldiers who are sexually assaulted and desire restricted reporting should report the assault to the Sexual Assault Response coordinator (SARC), or to a healthcare provider.
Daryl Fort, a former football player for the University of Maine, speaks to members of the Caserma Ederle community as a representative for Mentors in Violence Prevention, an organization that uses sports figures to elevate the discussion of gender violence.