February 26, 2021

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Family Crisis Center in Lufkin launches traveling T-shirt display for domestic violence awareness

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LUFKIN, Texas (KTRE) – October is domestic violence awareness month—and the Family Crisis Center of East Texas is launching a new project to empower survivors.



a person holding a sign: Family Crisis Center of East Texas launches T-shirt project to empower domestic violence survivors


© Provided by Tyler-Longview KTRE
Family Crisis Center of East Texas launches T-shirt project to empower domestic violence survivors

In Nacogdoches, this display of t-shirts shares survivors’ statements about their abusers and lives.

The black shirt represents victims who did not or could not reach out for help in time.

Organizers say this gives a glimpse into the lives of our friends and neighbors who have experienced domestic violence.

“In 2019 we served just over 1100 domestic violence victims and they became survivors. The t-shirts is a representation. We have eleven grey and white total t-shirts—and each one of those shirts is equivalent to one-hundred clients we served in 2019,” said Melissa Wheeler, the Development Director at the Family Crisis Center of East Texas.

If you are a domestic violence victim or know some that needs help, contact the Family Crisis Center of East Texas at 1-800-SAFE.

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(PREVIOUS) — October is Domestic Violence Awareness Month. The Family Crisis Center of East Texas in Lufkin has launched a new project to help bring awareness to domestic violence and empower survivors.

More from the Family Crisis Center:

During October’s Domestic Violence Awareness Month, the Family Crisis Center is drawing attention to just how many in East Texas are suffering silently at the hands of another through the Empowering Survivors T-shirt project.

This traveling display that explains through color and survivor quotes just how difficult victims’ lives are and how they change after reaching out for assistance from the Family Crisis Center.

“This is the first time we have created such a visual display,” Heather Kartye, Family Crisis Center Executive Director, said. “Survivors’ statements about their abusers and their lives post abuse allows the community an insight into the lives of these individuals.

“We want the community to understand that these situations are not the fault of the victims,” Kartye said. “And we want to use this display to help our community learn how to identify when someone is possibly being abused and help get them the support they need.”

The Family Crisis Center’s Thrift Store near Walmart is the first location for the Empowering T-shirt project.

The display has just three shirt colors:

• Black – represents those victims who did not or could not reach out for help in time to be helped;

• Gray – represents those living in domestic violence situations and transitioning or seeking help; and

• White – represents those who are utilizing domestic violence resources and are thriving survivors – helping end the culture in their family.

Each white and gray shirt represents 100 survivors. The lone black shirt recognizes all those who did not survive their circumstances.

“Hundreds of men, women and children in East Texas need aid, comfort and education to help them end the domestic violence situation in which they are living,” Kartye said. “They need our help to escape a bad situation and begin to heal and learn to live on their own.

“Through this project, we hope our community will realize the enormity of the need in our community and the purpose the Family Crisis Center serves: turning victims into survivors by offering shelter and education to help them get on their feet and moving forward so each can begin to end the culture of domestic violence in their family.”

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