SPRINGFIELD, Mass. (WWLP) – October is National Domestic Violence Awareness Month, and Saturday, Springfield area residents were able to have their voices heard. 22News explains how some of their stories are being used to help others.
Betsy Sanchez lost her 26-year-old daughter, Julie Treadwell to domestic violence.
Betsy Sanchez, told 22News, “In 2013 my daughter was murdered by the children’s father, and then he committed suicide. In the process he also left another man paralyzed from the neck down.”
Twin boys and Sanchez’ oldest grandson were left without a mom. Sanchez stepped in to take care of them.
Betsy Sanchez, “Back to you know raising small children.”
On Saturday a Domestic Violence Awareness event by the Women of Purpose, held at La Quinta hotel in Springfield. It was organized by three pastors that get together the third Saturday of each month and work to support other women.
Dhalma Laboy, Ministry Women of Purpose said, “To send the message to people about domestic violence and the importance of preventing it. We have seen too many people about this each day that suffer from this situation.”
Local church leaders were invited to speak about the issues they have seen.
“To educate leaders and prepare them on how to help other people.”
A nurse from Baystate Health and a police officer from the Springfield Police Department also spoke at the event.
One of the main points that was brought up during the domestic awareness event is that it is not always physical, it can also have a combination of mental and emotional abuse. Which can be difficult to convey to someone looking in from the outside.
Olga Caravallo, of Springfield mentioned, “It’s very common but it’s sad that there’s not many people are coming out and speaking.”
If you or a loved one is in an abusive relationship police say you should seek help, and keep you and your children’s safety a priority.