University of Wisconsin-Stout

Nov. 23, 2011

Social action projects this fall by a class at University of Wisconsin-Stout will conclude with a concert to benefit a local shelter.

Hope for the Holidays, featuring live music, will start at 8 p.m. Saturday, Dec. 3, at The Waterfront Bar and Grill, 512 Crescent St., Menomonie. Proceeds will go to the Bridge to Hope, a Menomonie-based domestic violence shelter.

The Campus Violence Prevention Project is co-sponsoring the seventh annual benefit. It will include speakers, a raffle, bingo at 8:30 p.m. and music at 10 p.m. by Roster McCabe, a reggae-funk band. Bingo cards are $4, and each player will receive a raffle ticket; the prize is a football signed by the Green Bay Packers.

Student Olivia Schuenke, of Delafield, is overseeing the benefit. “We, as a campus and community, are stakeholders in the vital services that the Bridge to Hope provides,” Schuenke said.

A total of 58 people in Wisconsin were victims of domestic violence in 2010, including children, women and men.

“The goal of all our projects is to increase awareness of working toward nonviolence in our communities,” said Susan Wolfgram, associate professor of human development and family studies. “You change one person and you can change a generation.”

The concert is one of six projects coordinated by HDFS students from Wolfgram’s Abuse and the Family class. The other projects and leaders this fall were:

Tyrell’s Dedication; Laura Henning, of Kiel: The Transition Center in Eau Claire helps inmates transition from jail to becoming contributing members of society. Students are building a bookshelf to hold books donated by the library.

The mother of a former center client, who died in a car accident, contributed a cash memorial in honor of her son. Students also are making a plaque in memory of the client and organizing donations of drawing and sketching materials and other books. They worked with Jessica Bryan, center director.

Use Voices not Violence; Heather Kangas, of Menomonie: Students provided domestic violence awareness education in the Dunn County Jail for male and female inmates. They worked with Sherry Berg, jail program director.

Men are Part of the Solution; Houa Lee, of Schofield: Students provided domestic violence awareness education in the Eau Claire County Jail for male and female inmates. They worked with Phil Kuehn, jail program director.

Healthy Teen Relationships; Ashley Jeske, of Eau Claire: Students provided teen dating violence awareness education at New Richmond Middle School and River Falls High School. They worked with Jennifer Kading, Children’s Services coordinator at Turningpoint for Victims of Domestic and Sexual Violence, of River Falls.

One high school student was thankful for the program, commenting: “I was in an abusive relationship for 6½ months. He beat me and threatened and attempted to kill me. I started crying when you were talking about unhealthy relationships because it was everything I went through. Thanks for coming to talk to us. It really changed me and the way I think.”

Helping Teens Take Control; Natasha Rotar, of Marshfield: Students provided teen awareness education on healthy relationships, with a focus on cyber-bullying and bystander intervention, at Northwest Juvenile Detention Center in Eau Claire. They worked with Casey Velie of the center.