A group of supporters gathered Thursday in Washington Square Park to walk for the victims of Domestic and sexually based violence. Susan Bursztynsky, president of Zonta for the Ottawa Chapter and director of Safe Journeys (second from left), speaks to the group before the luminary walk begins. Susan also was a speaker at the program that directly followed the walk and said that Safe Journeys alone helped 550 clients this year and had 3,001 nights of service. In Ottawa alone domestic violence issues are up 10% over last year. During the meeting there were three candles, two candles were lit for current victims of domestic and sexual violence and one remained dark in the memory of the ones whose lives were taken too soon.
Kathy Geiger, an Ottawa nurse for Sexual Assault Nurse Examiners who is trained specifically to deal with victims of domestic abuse, talks to a group of supporters about domestic and sexual violence Thursday night during Zonta's domestic violence awareness event at the First Methodist Church in Ottawa. She also spoke about her experiences in the ER. Her advice to someone wishing to help a victim of violence is to say, "I believe you, and I am here for you," whenever you choose you need my help." Just hearing those words give the victim a sense of hope they are not alone in their struggle.