CAMP ZAMA, Japan (Oct. 11, 2018) -- Camp Zama's Army Community Service hosted its second annual Purple Pumpkin event and proclamation signing Oct. 10 outside the ACS building in support of Domestic Violence Awareness Month.
Soldiers, community members and their children painted pumpkins purple and decorated them, combining the color of domestic violence awareness and a touchstone of the other notable October observance, Halloween.
"We wanted to highlight that October is Domestic Violence Awareness Month in fun way that the community could get involved in," said Ciara Luna, ACS director.
Participants were able to bring their pumpkins home after the event and were encouraged to display them throughout the month. The hope, said ACS domestic violence victim advocate Amy Trotto, is that the sight of so many uniquely colored pumpkins may prompt those who aren't aware of the campaign to find out more about it.
"It's a great way to bring awareness to the community and to the people who aren't involved with [the campaign]," said Trotto.
Col. Phillip K. Gage and Command Sgt. Maj. Billy J. Norman, commander and command sergeant major of U.S. Army Garrison Japan, respectively, also participated in the event along with the community members to sign the proclamation stating that they support Domestic Violence Awareness Month and are committed to preventing it both in their unit and across the Army.
"It's important to know that we as a community take a stand against domestic violence," said Gage, who also lauded the event for bringing awareness to the issue and for offering valuable resources to the community.