Darien is commemorating October as Domestic Violence Awareness Month by releasing 121 butterflies this Sunday at the Darien Nature Center. Each butterfly released at 130 on Sunday represents the 121 victims of domestic violence in Darien this year.
The event is co-sponsored by the Darien Domestic Abuse Partnership in association with the Domestic Violence Crisis Center. Butterflies can be sponsored at $20 each, checks made payable to Darien Social Services.
According to the National Coalition Against Domestic Violence, the month evolved from the first Day of Unity observed in October, 1981 by the National Coalition Against Domestic Violence. The intent was to connect battered womens advocates across the nation who were working to end violence against women and their children. The Day of Unity soon became a special week when a range of activities were conducted at the local, state, and national levels.
These activities were as varied and diverse as the program sponsors but had common themes: mourning those who have died because of domestic violence, celebrating those who have survived, and connecting those who work to end violence.
In October 1987, the first Domestic Violence Awareness Month was observed. That same year the first national toll-free hotline was begun. In 1989 the first Domestic Violence Awareness Month Commemorative Legislation was passed by the U.S. Congress. Such legislation has passed every year since.
The Darien Nature Center is at 120 Brookside Road, Darien. The butterfly release will be at 1:30, Sunday, Sept. 30.