AVDA Releases Comic Book Highlighting Healthy Teen Relationships
Since 2008, AVDA (Aid to Victims of Domestic Abuse) has implemented the Commit to Change: Violence Prevention Initiative in Palm Beach County as we believe one of the best ways to change individual’s beliefs, attitudes, and behaviors about domestic and dating violence is through education. In 2015, AVDA was awarded funding from the Office of Violence Against Women (OVW) to specifically work with local young men and boys to prevent domestic violence through education and mentoring. Through this mentoring, and in an effort to engage young men in promoting healthy relationships, the Committed Men Campaign was developed.
This campaign encourages youth to create and spread positive messages throughout the community about healthy relationships, how to prevent dating and domestic violence, and their role in ending violence for everyone. To date, the youth have created videos, key chains, posters, songs, and this comic book, titled “A Bad Rap”; sharing these messages in a relevant form to influence positive change among their peer groups.
The creation of this comic book was a collaboration between AVDA’s Violence Prevention Education team, local youth involved in Committed Men, and community partners, such as local independent Hip-Hop Artist/Author, Ramon “Absoloot” Robinson. Ramon has been working together with AVDA through the violence prevention program for five years. As to why this works means so much to him, Ramon said, “I’m a better man because of the education I’ve received from AVDA. By doing the work necessary to change myself and the community I’ve become a better mentor and ultimately better husband and father.”
To celebrate the release of this comic book and the Committed Men Campaign, AVDA is hosting an event to promote the message even further. Select youth, who are a part of AVDA’s Commit to Change Initiative, will hear from music industry veteran, Paul Porter, on the influence of music and media for positive change. The “Media’s Message” event will be streamed live on AVDA’s Instagram (@AVDACommits) on September 18 from 1-3PM. “We are proud of the local youth involved in the Commit to Change Program and are excited to share this comic book showcasing their work with the public,” Pam O’Brien, AVDA’s President & CEO.