Help us reach out to victims of domestic violence and sexual assault by donating books to local libraries with information on how to find help, escape, and heal.
Many women and men in the United States experience domestic violence or sexual assault in their lifetimes, and unfortunately our society often responds to these individuals with judgment rather than compassion. When stories of rape or abuse appear in the media, it is all too common for people to think “She must have been asking for it” or “Why doesn’t she just leave?” These attitudes—and the lack of information and resources available—make it difficult for victims of domestic violence or sexual assault to get the help they need.
Pages for Change addresses the lack of resources and negative attitudes towards survivors of rape and abuse by donating books on these topics to public and college libraries. We hope that by making these books more widely available, we will make it easier for individuals experiencing domestic violence and sexual assault to find the help and information they need. We also aim to educate the public about the realities of domestic violence and sexual assault in the hopes of reducing the stigma that victims face.
Pages for Change is a project by Middle Way House, a non-profit domestic violence program and rape crisis center in Bloomington, Indiana. Middle Way House provides emergency shelter to women and children who have experienced domestic violence and non-residential services, including legal and personal advocacy, crisis intervention, and support groups to male and female survivors of domestic violence and sexual assault. Middle Way House serves residents of six counties in south central Indiana: Monroe, Morgan, Owen, Lawrence, Greene, and Martin counties.
There are 19 public and college libraries in Middle Way House’s service area, and they are lacking important books on domestic violence and sexual assault. We developed a list of 20 key books on these topics with guidance from the National Coalition Against Domestic Violence’s suggested reading list. The books we selected provide vital information about the tactics abusers use, why abusers behave the way they do, how to safely leave a violent or controlling relationship, how to recover from the mental and emotional injuries of domestic violence and sexual assault, and how to support a loved one who is a survivor of domestic violence or sexual assault. These books are aimed at survivors of physical and emotional abuse from a variety of cultural and ethnic groups as well as friends and family members who want to help them. Unfortunately, of the 19 libraries in Middle Way House’s service area, only 2 have more than 4 books from our list of 20 recommended books.
The donations we receive through Start Some Good will be used to purchase books for each of our 19 partner libraries and bookplates with shelter information and services for each book. A small portion will go toward the cost of the Pages for Change opening reception in October.
From our complete list of 20 books, we have developed abbreviated book lists for each of the libraries in our service area based on demographics, shelf space, and the books that each library already owns.
Our tipping point goal of $3,000 will cover the cost of the abbreviated book set for each library. These tailored sets include between 8 and 13 books from the list of 20 recommended books. Reaching our tipping point goal will also allow us to cover the cost of bookplates for each book and an opening reception to thank our donors.
Our total fundraising goal of $9,000 will cover the cost of a full set of books in each of the 19 libraries, a few non-circulating copies for library—for those who cannot take the books into their homes, bookplates for each book we purchase, and the cost of the opening reception.
Although we hope to raise enough funds for a complete set of books in each library, reaching our tipping point goal will do so much good and provide invaluable resources for the women and men of our community!
What your support buys:
· Every $15 donated buys a book for one of our partner libraries.
· A donation of $150 buys an abbreviated book list for one of the libraries.
· A donation of $300 buys one full set of books (twenty books total).
· A donation of $1000 buys three full sets of books and funds bookplates for the entire project.