Domestic Violence Awareness Coalition announced as new name for DVAC student organization

DVAC, originally the “Domestic Violence Advocacy Center” unanimously decided to change their organization name to “Domestic Violence Awareness Coalition.”

According to Aimee Durant (‘15), President of DVAC, the original name created confusion as the words “advocacy” and “center” might suggest that they are a clinic working on behalf of domestic violence victims.

“We are a student organization aimed towards raising awareness for domestic violence in the community. We recently changed our name to better reflect this goal (from the Domestic Violence Advocacy Center to the Domestic Violence Awareness Coalition). We do a lot of work with the local women’s shelter, volunteering there on a regular basis and organizing an annual raffle with 100% of the proceeds going to them. This raffle typically raises over $1,000 and it gets DVAC members out in the community asking for donations, which we believe advances our goal of awareness, even if certain businesses do not donate. We also host speakers, volunteer with local organizations, and are trying to link up with the undergraduate community to get involved with even more,” Durant explained.

DVAC’s Executive Board discussed the idea of a name change at the end of last year, and have now taken the steps to create a name that more accurately describes the organization’s mission and purpose.

“DVAC recognizes that there are many misconceptions regarding domestic violence. Between victim-blaming and the idea that domestic violence is a personal, rather than a societal, issue, we feel that community education and awareness are vital to helping victims and encouraging change,” said Durant.

DVAC began in 1996 as a joint effort between the Legal Aid Society, the Forsyth County Bar, Wake Forest University and the Clerk of Court which provides support to victims of domestic violence. Through DVAC and Legal Aid, law students are trained to represent domestic violence victims in both civil and criminal matters in the courtroom, These courtroom volunteers provide an invaluable service to victims of domestic violence seeking protective orders against their abusers.

Read more about the organization here.