Middle school students learn ways to prevent relationship abuse

NEW HANOVER COUNTY, NC (WECT) – UNCW and the Rape Crisis Center of Coastal Horizons Center, Inc. teamed up to help teach middle school students ways to prevent relationship abuse.

They have created a mentoring program using a curriculum called Safe Dates and students from UNCW will teach eighth grade students how to avoid potentially abusive relationships.

"This partnership is an ideal fit because middle school students look up to the college students. They see them as trustworthy people they can respect," explained Katie Bennett, rape prevention education coordinator for the Rape Crisis Center of Coastal Horizons Center.

Students at Holly Shelter Middle School learned more about attitudes and behaviors associated with dating abuse and violence Wednesday.  The Safe Dates program helped them understand the prevalence of dating abuse and find ways to have equal communication with their partners.

According to a press release, the program is part of a growing national movement aimed at ending violence with prevention –based education as opposed to the traditional victim-based education.

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