On October 22, 2008 Brenda Clubine was released from prison after serving 26 years for defending herself against her abusive husband.
She now continues with her advocacy by speaking out about the dangers of abusive relationships in hopes that people will continue to make a difference in the struggle against domestic violence.
I headed to Eureka, California where I was going to do a screening at the local Arcata Lounge and Theater. It was going to be an even better time since I would also have the chance to see my son and grandsons while I was there. I arrived on Friday evening and my event was not going to be until Saturday evening. I drove to my sons to visit for a while and enjoyed some time with the family before heading to my hotel for the evening. The next day I was able to enjoy more time with the family then had to prepare for the evening event.
Around 4:00 p.m. I headed to the Theater. Upon arrival I met the host for the evening as well as several other agencies and organizations that set up their information for people who would attend to gather information on local resources. It was a theater unlike any other I had ever been in, they not only sold food but sold drinks and in lieu of movie seats there were small tables for people to sit at. The film was introduced and the screening began. It was so great to know that I was in a community that served my family as well. The theater was full and very quiet. After the film I was introduced and I spoke prior to a very inter-active Q&A period. People in the Community since it was a community event really wanted to know what they could do to make a difference where they lived. This was a great experience for me and I also enjoyed the added bonus of being able to see my family. The other organizations that were there were very excited about how the evening had gone as well and the fact they were able to share with the community all they have to offer as well. THANK YOU EVERYONE FOR AN AMAZING TIME IN ARCATA!!! I hope to have the chance to return again.
October 4, 2011 once again I was given the awesome opportunity to screen “Sin By Silence” at Pacific Lutheran University in Washington. I was reminded how these young ladies and gentlemen are truly on fire to make a difference not only in their school community but in the lives of their friends and family. My heart is touched each and every time I have been able to return to PLU and I am eternally grateful for Professor Kate Luther and those who assist her in seeing that this event has taken place the last three years. I enjoy the chance to answer questions that are mindful and heartfelt and know without question that these young people are ready to step up and spread the word about breaking the silence. THANK YOU to each and everyone of you that put this event together and were there to make it another resounding success. Also, thank you to the local Y.W.C.A. staff for offering information and being a constant resource for the local community.
I was given the opportunity to be a special guest speaker at the D.A.W.N. “Evening of Promise” event in Seattle, Washington. What an evening of promise it truly was. There were wonderful auction items bid on and received as their gala auction fundraiser. I had the chance to meet some wonderful people and share the importance of support groups for victims to empower these individuals to be long term, life time survivors. I want to especially thank Verizon Wireless who made it possible for me to be a part of this event and the D.A.W.N. staff from the Executive Director to each and everyone including volunteers for the amazing work you all did in putting the event together and all of the work you do each and every day, THANK YOU!! This was an evening to be remembered.
On Saturday, June 11, 2011 Every 9 Seconds held their first Official Board Meeting. What an amazing group of on fire individuals. What makes it so exciting is that partnering with Sin By Silence enables Every 9 Seconds to continue to break the silence and educate people.
Each board member brings some new and refreshing ideas as to the best way we can spread the message that “any kind of abuse is wrong.” I am truly living my life’s dream, with all the excitement and ferver of a child on their first real Christmas.
Thank you each and every one of you who have been a part of making Every 9 Seconds a success. Keep posted on my blog, on our website and on Facebook, these next several months about what is coming up.
Thanks everyone for your support!
On May 17th I had the opportunity to screen Sin By Silence at Highline Community College in Des Moines, Washington. It was a beautiful day, after several days of rain, and the fact that it stopped in time for the event was fantastic. There was a good group of people in attendance. It was once again awesome to see the magic happen when people see the film, you can visibly see the fire in their spirit. They get it! It’s as if a huge light bulb goes off and they want to make that difference as well.
I met some amazing people. The staff were all so great working with me to make things smooth, which they were, and then some. Every 9 Seconds had the chance to sell their first T-shirts, woohoo! Both Sin By Silence and Every 9 Seconds continue to work together to break the silence of abuse and let everyone know, that abuse is NOT acceptable, no matter what. My life and heart continue to be touched by those I have the chance to personally meet and speak with at each event. Thank you so very much Highline Community College for being a part of making the difference in your community, with your students and also your faculty. I look forward to being brought back again.
Again, THANK YOU ALL!!!
I want to share something very close to my heart, on March 27th, 2011 I received my 501(c)3 now giving Every 9 Seconds tax deductible status,YEAH!!!!! My dream for more years than I can begin to count was to one day gain my freedom and have the opportunity to start a non-profit to continue the work of my heart. I have been so Blessed to be able to be a part of Sin By Silence and spreading the word to break the silence and educate people not only on the dynamics of abuse but about incarcerated survivors. I wish I could truly put into words how many people, organizations, etc. have been a part of making my dream come true. Thank you everyone, keep an eye out for Every 9 Seconds website to go online. Again, it was only with the help of everyone that made it all possible.
April 20th I had the opportunity to share with the ladies at the Women’s Shelter of Long Beach and go to the Youth Outreach Group. What an awesome time I had. The ladies at the shelter ROCKED in a way that is absolutely indescribable. I honor and am so proud of them all, for making the decisions they’ve made to be where they are. It is not an easy decision that is made lightly, especially when children are involved.
Speaking of children, one of the ladies had been there for I believe 20 days, and she had her baby which was about 10 - 15 days old. What an awesome group of staff at the shelter and the outreach center, these individuals are completely committed to making a difference there is NO question they care from their heart. As the young people arrived to see the screening of Sin By Silence they were given the opportunity to pick a piece of paper from a bowl open it up and as they watched the film identify with the person they chose.
Once the film was over the staff asked the young people if they had a chance to say anything to me what would they say, several of them spoke out and said things, then the staff said, well why not say it to Brenda directly. When I walked into the room, you should have seen the looks on their faces it was absolutely priceless. It was exciting to interact with these young people and hear what their questions were and concerns. WOW! I was so impressed with how young and yet how much they knew about teen dating violence and domestic violence. They made the choice to be there, they didn’t have to be there. That sure says a lot about these young people making change not only in their own lives but in the lives of their friends. They are survivors! either personally or have seen it.
I was so honored to have been able to share with them and proud of them for making the decision to be a part of making change, STOPPING THE VIOLENCE! Thanks again everyone for giving me the chance to share the afternoon with you all, I am forever touched by each and everyone of you.
April 11th I left for Indiana. I arrived in Indiana and had the chance to drive into Michigan and visit family before going to South Bend on the 12th. I made the drive back from Michigan to South Bend and arrived at the St. Mary’s Inn. I will admit, this was of course after taking the wrong direction and getting lost therefore going approximately 30 more miles out of my way. The next morning I was met by Connie Adams my contact person for my events in South Bend. First thing we went and got some coffee and headed for the local YWCA where I was going to have the chance to speak some of the ladies that have been either in or through the shelter process escaping a violent relationship. As I was waiting for everyone to arrive and meeting different people I knew almost instantly it was going to really be a great morning. Sometimes I get nervous, yes I do believe it or not. Anyhow, I began by sharing some of my story and telling the ladies that I knew without any question the strength it took for them to make the decision they did to go to a shelter and that I truly honor their decision. After having the chance to speak and interact with the ladies it was time to leave to St. Mary’s College for lunch. We arrived at the school and it was evident it was lunch time as everyone was heading into the Cafeteria. Connie took me to a back room area where I was introduced briefly to the Belles Against Violence Office members and we proceeded into the Cafeteria to get our food and return to the break room where we initially met.
During the lunch hour I had the chance to get to know the young ladies of the Belles Against Violence Office and what they are hoping to accomplish by being a part of the program they have decided to be a part of. I was absolutely impressed by these ladies and how it was abundantly clear in their dialog with me that it is about “opening dialog” and letting other women know that violence against women is not only wrong, but that they wanted those who have experienced it or know someone who is, that they are their for them, that they can be accessed and really, truly care about making a difference. Determined young ladies making change! It was time to head out back to my hotel which by the way was directly across the street for a brief time since I was going to speak to an afternoon class. I arrived for the afternoon class and it was so great to have the chance to speak to these young ladies, I further challenged them to attend the eveing event and bring a friend with them that might not otherwise have attended. After speaking to the class for an hour actually a bit more, by the way, thanks you Ms. Sanali for allowing me the opportunity to speak with your class.
Once again, I returned to my hotel to prepare for the evening event. I arrived for the evening event excited and ready to set-up the table with information and the addresses for the ladies who are in the film. The film began and almost towards the end there was a snaf-foo that did not allow the DVD to finish. I began speaking and incorporated the Red Flag Campaign into the event. There was an awesome amount of attendees as well as a few young men. After the evening, during the Q&A panel which included staff from the YWCA, SOS-an aspect of the Family Justice Center and myself. There were some good questions asked and everyone was informed about the Take back the night event that Norte Dame and St. Mary’s College were considered points of light, how awesome!! I was touched by this event in a way I never imagined possible and I want to thank each and everyone who is not only a part of Belles Against Violence Office, but who made the choice to attend the event to have their voice be heard and make a difference. Hope to return again!
On April 7th to the 9th I had the opportunity to be a part of the Great Falls, Montana “Celebrate the Night” event. I arrived in Great Falls early on Monday and picked-up my rental car then went to my hotel to settle in. I called my contact person Autum Frey to let her know I had arrived safely and was really excited about the events of the following day. I woke up the next morning approximately 0530 and turned on the news. I heard the newscaster say that, “be careful on your drive this morning there are up to 6 foot snow drifts in some areas”, immediately I looked out my hotel room window which was facing the Missouri River and saw a winter wonderland in front of me. The water from where I stood was raging and the ground was completely covered with snow. Yes, something I don’t normally have the chance to to be in, living in California.
I arrived at the YWCA around 11:00 a.m. as they were setting-up and preparing a wonderful luncheon for members of the community and board members of the YWCA. The guest speaker for the luncheon was their own local news anchor Katie Stuckey. It was enjoyable to hear her speak and why she got into journalism and how much she supports working to make change. After the luncheon she interviewed me for the evening news regarding the evening event. I then went to the hall where the event was to held and attempted to assist in setting-up and ensuring the DVD worked properly. It was time to return to my hotel and get ready for the evening. I arrived back at the hall, ready to set-up my table of information. The snow had slowed to almost a stop but it was becoming increasingly chilly. I was so excited about the event as I would have the opportunity not only to share Sin By Silence with this amazing community but also be the one who was handing the award recipients their awards. What an honor for me on all accounts, as the ladies and gentlemen stepped-up to receive their awards after having dinner, watching the film, then hearing me speak, it was like magic. The smiles of accomplishment on their faces truly touched my heart, not to mention the resounding clapping as the recipients walked up to receive their respective awards. I do not cease to be amazed at all of the effort to make a difference in the arenas of Sexual Assault, Child Abuse and Domestic Violence, that a Community working together can accomplish. To put into words now,what this all meant to me that evening, I will be forever touched by the lives who touched mine that night. Thank you all for allowing me to be part of such an awesome event. I would love to return some time in the future, hope to see you all again. Keep up the awesome work!