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Annual DiVa Spa combats youth crime

Borough President Adolfo Carrion, Jr., hosted the 6th annual DiVA Spa, an annual event to bring domestic violence awareness information to the men and women of the borough.

The DiVA Spa is an annual event, held in conjunction with Bronx Week, that transformed the Veterans’ Memorial Hall into a fully equipped day spa that allows guests to receive free beauty services as well as information on domestic violence awareness.

Over 700 men and women are serviced each year at this event; counselors provide short-term services on site and/or crisis intervention, victims also receive referrals for long-term services.

This year’s theme, “Combating Unhealthy Relationships in our Schools,” reached out to Bronx youth, who seem to be one of the rising numbers for the domestic violence epidemic.

In accordance with this theme, Carrion announced the Teen Version of the Pregones in Motion to Combat Domestic Violence Play, “The Phone Call”.

This production is an interactive play based on first-hand accounts of real-life teen dating violence victims, where members of the audience determine the best course of action under different circumstances and in dialogue with peers and legal experts, followed by a public conversation with domestic violence specialists.

“According to the 2007 NYC High School Youth Risk Behavior Survey, 11% of high school students reported being hit, slapped, or physically hurt on purpose by a boyfriend or girlfriend within the past year,” said Carrion, who added that in 2007, 16,861 teen calls were received by the NYC’s Domestic Violence Hotline.

Under the sponsorship of Pregones Theater and the Bronx Borough President Office, the performance “The Phone Call” will be taken to numerous high schools throughout the city.

Also this year during the 6th Annual DiVa Spa conference, victims of domestic violence shared their experiences and explained how the DiVA Spa program helped them to get out of the abusive relations.

“I want to explain how important it is to get help,” said Rosalba Rolon, founder and artistic director of Pregones Theater, “because if we don’t make the decision on time, we could lose our life.”

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