Outer Banks Hotline begins OBX Men for Safe Relationships campaign

Published 9:01 am Sunday, May 14, 2023

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By Stephanie Baker, Associate Director, Outer Banks Hotline

Outer Banks Hotline, Dare County’s only interpersonal violence crisis prevention and intervention agency, invites all OBX men to participate in our inaugural “OBX Men for Safe Relationships” campaign to promote a safe and compassionate community in the Outer Banks. This campaign kicked off with a breakfast held May 11 at the offices in Nags Head and will run from this weekend, for Mother’s Day, and will end on Father’s Day weekend.

OBX Men for Safe Relationships is a campaign geared towards reaching the male population in our community.  Having men, especially who are looked upon as leaders, publicly acknowledge that interpersonal violence is a problem; and a good, positive and healthy relationship is based on trust, kindness and love, and then sharing that message with peers, family members and friends will have an impact on relationships to come and help prevent an increase in interpersonal violence issues. Standing up, stepping forward and recognizing the issues of domestic abuse, sexual assault and human trafficking are real and occur in every community, Hotline believes change can happen.

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To date, 22 men have committed to being “leaders” in this inaugural campaign. Leaders range from local small business owners of construction and painting companies to local law enforcement and government officials; from large corporation businessmen to retirees; doctors and nonprofit leaders. All OBX Men for Safe Relationship leaders receive information on its programs and services, safe-house, their relationships with other community agencies and how their Hotline thrift stores fit in. Men who sign up will be asked to sign a “Safe Relationship” pledge, and will be provided six packets of information, one for the “leader” and five for the leader to share with other men (and/or mature boys) in our community between Mother’s Day and Father’s Day. The names of all participants will be released to the public on Father’s Day via social media and local media channels.

Although not an official fundraiser (and not mandatory to donate to participate), Hotline has suggested a donation pledge of $126 from each person, leaders and those they mentor, which will go to help support its prevention and intervention programs and services. Why $126?  The reason behind the number is that in the most recent NIH study of Lifetime Economic Burden of Intimate Partner Violence, the per-victim cost is $103,767 for females and $23,414 for males. Adding the 103 and the 23 brings the number to 126. The donation is only suggested and it is not mandatory to contribute financially. The goal of the campaign is to spread awareness.

For more information regarding the OBX Men for Safe Relationships campaign, contact Stephanie Baker at Outer Banks Hotline at 252-473-5121 or via email at stephanie@obhotline.org.