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Art+Activism: Empowering Student Voices During Teen Dating Violence Awareness Month

The Retreat and The Watermill Center present a unique opportunity for high school students interested in positively impacting their community. Art+Activism: Social Justice Makers will be held at The Watermill Center on Tuesdays in February from 5:30 to 7 PM.

Students participating in Art+Activism: Social Justice Makers will draw inspiration from the work of Artists-in-Residence at the Watermill Center who have utilized art to express their voices and work together to harness the power of art as a means for social change. The series will culminate in a final project showcasing work created by the students at The Watermill Center, with the goal of bringing attention to Teen Dating Violence Awareness Month in February.

“We’re excited for students to embark on this transformative journey as they delve into the powerful combination of art and activism,” said Courtney Hyland, Associate Director of Education. “The Retreat works to empower young people of all ages, including through our Teen Leadership Council, and we’re always looking for new ways to engage our youth leaders in community initiatives. This program does just that, while aligning with our mission to promote respect and prevent abuse.”

From Ava Locks, Education and Public Programs Manager at The Watermill Center, “Our Art + Activism program introduces teens to Artists who are driving social change through their creative practice. We are thrilled to expand our enduring partnership with The Retreat and to support the vital work of their Teen Leadership Council. I hope these workshops will ignite their sense of agency as community advocates and creative thinkers.”

The Retreat and The Watermill Center have been collaborating for over 10 years.

“The Watermill Center has generously invited Retreat clients and staff to use its space and programs to create and inspire. Our shelter families have participated in fun and educational experiences, and they have found healing through these programs,” said Loretta K. Davis, Executive Director of The Retreat. “The students in our Teen Leadership Council have also benefited from advocacy and art projects there.”

Students who actively participate in Art + Activism will be granted community service hours.

“This is a unique opportunity for teens to use their voices in empowering and artistic ways. Whether you’re an art enthusiast or someone eager to learn about social activism, Art+Activism is designed for you,” said Hyland.

Registration is here: https://forms.gle/ETvaGhpcx1TbxnVt6

Teen Leader: Why TLC is Important

Teen Leadership Council group photo

By Christina, a Retreat Volunteer and College Student As a college senior, I am not exactly a high schooler, yet I attend the Teen Leadership Council (TLC) meetings as a volunteer and intermediary for the students. These meetings have impressed me in countless ways thus far. Primarily, the students are very well-versed in the signs […]

No One is Immune

A former volunteer shares her Retreat story: Abuse is an insidious and pervasive problem that affects countless lives in our community. It’s crucial that we understand that abuse knows no boundaries-it affects people of all ages, genders, races, and socioeconomic backgrounds. No one is immune, and it is happening right here, in our very own […]

Common Questions About DV

At The Retreat, we are big believers in the saying, “There is no such thing as a dumb question.” 

When it comes to domestic abuse, a complex and personal topic, there is often a lot of confusion. But, the more we know, the better we can help those in need and ultimately break the cycle of family violence.

Read on to see some common questions and answers about this issue:

1. Why don’t they just leave?
There are many reasons why someone might stay in an abusive relationship:

Fear of their partner’s actions | Concern over their ability to live independently | Abuse was normal in their household and they don’t recognize that the behavior is abusive | Shame that they are in an abusive relationship, feeling like they did something wrong rather than their abuser | Lack of resources, they may be financially dependent on their abuser after not being allowed to work or have access to bank accounts | Guilt over taking children away from a parent. 

2. Are all victims women and all perpetrators men?

No. One in 3 women and 1 in 4 men have experienced some form of physical violence by an intimate partner.  [can’t find something that goes here because the page I was looking at was almost identical to the other!]

3. Does it count as abuse if it doesn’t include physical abuse?

Domestic abuse is not just physical. It can be emotional, sexual, technological, financial and spiritual. 

4. Is abuse only common in romantic relationships?

No. Abuse can happen between relatives, such as parents and children or siblings, as well as in friendships and the workplace.

5. Does abuse discriminate?

No. Abuse can affect individuals of every age, gender, sexual orientation, income level, education level, race, ethnicity, and socio-economic background.

The Retreat Presents at the Beau Biden National Conference

The Retreat’s Education Department presented at the Beau Biden National Conference to Protect America’s Youth on June 28th. The conference featured more than 60 speakers and experts on child welfare, abuse, the law, youth, and more, with the goal of providing advice and a plan for preventing and responding to child abuse in any community. […]

“The View” Treats Moms at The Stephanie House

Gretta Monahan, lifestyle expert from “The View,” and producer Robin Hommel organized a day of pampering for the women at The Stephanie House shelter over Mother’s Day weekend. Monahan and the tv crew headed east for the day to treat the women and raise awareness about domestic violence. The segment aired on June 16th. Hair and makeup stylists from the show provided the women with makeovers. And with their pick of beautiful new clothes, bags and shoes, our residents were able to start rebuilding their wardrobes. After the head-to-toe styling, the women were treated to a specially-prepared meal at the shelter, courtesy of celebrity chef Katie Lee. We are immensely grateful to Gretta, Robin and “View” co-host Joy Behar for providing these women with a well-deserved day of pampering and for making them feel so special!

Sportime Couple Honored at Retreat Gala

Printed in East Hampton Star June 8, 2023 The number-one spot on the 2022 Forbes annual top charities list went to Feeding America, a Chicago-based network that supplies more than 200 regional and local food banks in the United States.Ten other food-related charities appeared on the list, reflecting the pandemic’s impact on food insecurity in […]

A Hidden Epidemic

We should all be outraged about intimate partner abuse, which is violence against women 90% of the time. It’s often an invisible and tolerated behavior that has to stop.

Financial Wellness is Crucial for Survivors of Abuse

One in 4 women experience domestic violence in the United States, and nearly all of those cases include financial abuse. This is one of the primary reasons why victims are unable to leave an abusive partner or have to return to one.

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