Warner Robins, Ga. – Central Georgia Technical College Technical (CGTC) and its Special Populations Office (SPO) held the last of three discussions on domestic violence last week, serving as a reminder to those who may be suffering that they are not alone.
‘Domestic Violence: Not All Wounds are Visible,’ featured guest speakers from the Salvation Army Safe House who spoke with attendees about the signs, myths, resources, and assistance for issues of domestic violence. CGTC’s Macon and Milledgeville campuses held the previous two sessions.
Speaking at the event in Warner Robins was LaDelia Snell, a victim of domestic violence, and case manager at the Safe House. She shared her story of overcoming two abusive relationships.
“I saw it as a teenager; as an adult, I went through it,” she said. “Now, I want to help people.”
Snell added that the hardest part about being a victim of abuse was the internal doubt she faced, asking herself repeatedly: “would I ever get out of this?”
Snell and others emphasized the internal damage of abuse and how, generally, there are limited signs to what is going on in the mind of a victim. However, through dialogue and conversation, they hope society can start to see the “internal bruises” of living through abusive relationships.
“Know the signs,” Snell said. “Know who is here to help.”
In the community, the Salvation Army is here to help by offering counseling, case management, bilingual services, and advocacy for victims of domestic abuse situations. On campus, SPO provides student-centered comprehensive programs, services, and events that promote equity, enhance the educational experience, foster success and contribute to the economic self-sufficiency of students who are members of special populations that include those with disabilities, hardships, and in non-traditional career paths.
“This is about promoting healthy relationships,” said Donna Dutcher, the director of SPO for Crawford, Dooly, Houston, Peach, Pulaski, and Twiggs counties. “It is so hard for us to wrap our head around it sometimes, that some people have grown up not knowing what a healthy relationship looks like, what love looks like.”
Dutcher added that we do not have to look to national news to see this type of violence happening.
“Sometimes we think the horrifying and catastrophic domestic violence issues are happening elsewhere. This awareness workshop is showing how to see it happening to somebody you know and love,” she said.
The ‘Domestic Violence: Not All Wounds are Visible’ discussions were part of SPO’s reoccurring series entitled, 59 Minutes to Success, where, in under an hour, special guests tackle different challenges and issues facing students, faculty, and staff.
Past discussions have included finances, mental health, job-readiness and other topics. Future discussions are in the works, including meetings to connect students to the Non-Traditional Student Association.
For more information, visit the Special Population page here: http://www.centralgatech.edu/specialpops/