By the HELP Committee
and Havre Public Schools
In the United States, 14 states were chosen to implement an exciting, forward-looking program dealing with domestic abuse - the DELTA Project. Montana was one of those select few. Only five cities in Montana were selected to develop and implement programs aimed at primary prevention of domestic abuse. Havre was one of these very select few. As a community, we should feel justifiably proud of being selected.
The DELTA Project -Domestic Abuse Prevention Enhancements and Leadership Through Alliances - focuses on primary prevention - keeping domestic violence from happening in the first place. Funded by the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention to implement the program, Montana is one of the states deemed "ready to proceed" by virtue of having and using a local CCR (Coordinated Community Response) group. This task force donates its time to respond to domestic and interpersonal violence in a consistent, coordinated manner. It is composed of about 38 members meeting every three months. These people include lawyers, school counselors, volunteers, business owners, law enforcement, county attorneys, Human Resources Development Council personnel and others. Matters of policy and procedure are routinely discussed and fine-tuned among these important sectors of the community that deal with domestic abuse.
Because of time constraints - meeting once every three months is not frequent enough - the DELTA project coordinator and several members of the CCR created a subgroup CCR that reports to the main task force. The subgroup meets on the first Tuesday of every month from 10 to 11:30 a.m. at District IV HRDC. There are eight to 12 members representing business owners, the Boys & Girls Club of the Hi-Line, HRDC, the faith community, law enforcement, the ReSPONSE anti-violence organization at Montana State University-Northern and others. We are seeking to broaden membership. We, as a group, seek to provide a community-based response to the problem of domestic violence and interpersonal violence. We focus on ideas that work toward prevention - keeping domestic violence from happening in the first place.
The CCR chose to focus its energy and the DELTA Project resources on youth and adolescents, primarily boys, because the perpetrators in more than 90 percent of violent domestic incidents are male. The areas of our community that we believe are best able to effect change in this population are schools, the faith community and after-school programs. With support from all community members concerned about the problem of domestic violence and the trauma it represents, we can begin to realize the vision of a safe, violence-free society.
Several curriculums and programs exist to address the adolescent population and the problems of violence. For example, Havre Public Schools and the HELP Committee and Boys & Girls Club of the Hi-Line use a curriculum called Second Step, which addresses bullying, anger management, social competencies and self-control. This program offers a graduated teaching program that reaches from kindergarten through 12th grade and a segment for including families.
Many more programs exist and can be tailored to a particular area of concern or community interest.
In supporting the efforts to implement these innovative, visionary programs, the Havre community again shows itself to be concerned, caring and progressive. We have a long pathway to travel to get to violence prevention, but Havre has taken the first steps. Pat yourselves on the back and continue the good work.
For more information or to get involved with the DELTA Project, contact Lin at 265-6206.