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Domestic Violence Awareness Month

We must educate those in domestic violence environments on how to safely avoid incidents of gun violence

Kellie Sturgis from PeaceMakers smiles for the camera

There are so many domestic violence victims who feel there is no way out of their current situation because of a lack of knowledge and resources. At Project:PeaceMakers, Inc. (PPMI) in Los Angeles, California, we have over 200 clients that our case managers assist each week in classes, individual counseling, Temporary Restraining Orders, and essential resources like housing, food, and clothing. Seeing these victims and their children become healthy survivors is my motivation to keep being a servant-leader for all human beings!

I am the chief operations officer and have worked for the organization steadily for the last five years. I am a retired Los Angeles police officer, and my mother, who is the co-founder and CEO of the organization, asked me to assist her in operating the business as she is getting older. My mother has been working in the domestic violence and intimate partner violence arena for 41 years. Knowing how dedicated and committed she has been to helping victims and survivors, as she is a survivor, it was a no-brainer that I needed to assist her in any way I could to continue to fulfill her vision and mission. 

We need to educate our clients on how to SAFELY avoid incidents of gun violence when they are in a domestic violence environment.

Gun violence is extremely prevalent in the lives of the victims we come in contact with on a daily basis in Los Angeles. We need to educate our clients on how to SAFELY avoid incidents of gun violence when they are in a domestic violence environment, especially in their homes.

About 15 members of staff at PeaceMakers, Inc. smile together while wearing matching white polo shirts

With the support of an Everytown for Gun Safety Support Fund Domestic Violence Grant, we have formulated a gun safety survey so all of our clients receive detailed information on the correlation between gun violence and domestic violence victims and survivors. We have added gun safety as a topic to our syllabus to teach in all of our classes, including domestic violence/intimate partner violence education classes, parenting education, and anger management classes. We share these materials so our communities understand the importance of gun safety and how it can impact the lives of victims and their children.

We are a small nonprofit organization with 15 total employees, but our amazing team—receptionist, case managers/facilitator, administrative staff, management, and board of directors—are large in heart, dedication, commitment, and a passion to assist all human beings, especially those of people of color, LGBTQ+, faith-based communities, and low-income families in the heart of South Los Angeles! Our motto is, “We want to ‘BE’ the change in your life!!!” This is the passion that drives each of us to ‘BE’ the difference to our clients.

Learn more about Project:PeaceMakers, Inc. (PPMI)

Through education, intervention, empowerment, and prevention, we are able to teach and apply a life-changing approach in helping break the cycle of violence in our homes and our communities.

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