An abuser “takes the time to gain trust while building a relationship with you,” Witkowski said.She urged parents to always know where their children are, who their friends are and with whom they are talking.In the program, five local teenage/young adult actors and one social worker performed a monologue, each acting out the part of either a victim of teen/young adult relationship violence, the abuser or a third party witness to abuse.The program was geared toward young people between the ages of 15 and 20.The program aims to generate community-wide awareness to empower Jewish teens and the adults in their lives to prevent dating abuse and promote healthy and respectful behavior in dating relationships.
“It is a big deal and that it could happen to anyone,” Weisberg said. Other panelists included Rabbi Beth Jacowitz Chottiner, Dr.Teen Safe participants create and organize outreach campaigns and community activities and design and present workshops to their peers, parents, and educators.Are you interested in bringing a Teen Safe program to your school, youth group, or synagogue? Following the monologues, the actors stayed in character while the audience of approximately 80 teenagers and young adults posed questions such as, “Why didn’t you tell anyone? ” The intention of “Words Not Spoken” was to open up a dialogue, in a safe environment, on subjects that are often not shared out loud.
Matza-Haughton trained and was in communication with all of the participants in the drama for about a three-month period.
“This allowed each actor to create his or her own character with my help and guidance and allowed them to speak the voice of the issue,” she said.