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Deaf Overcoming Violence through Empowerment: DOVE's mission is to provide culturally appropriate and fully accessible services for Deaf, DeafBlind, and Hard of Hearing victims of domestic violence and sexual assault in Colorado. DOVE works to empower victims by providing 24-hr crisis intervention, information and referral, and advocacy. DOVE is also committed to changing attitudes which foster and perpetuate violence through community education, outreach, and interagency collaboration.
Dove's purpose is to create a seamless system of services for Deaf, DeafBlind, and Hard of Hearing (HOH) victims of domestic violence and sexual assault in the state of Colorado. Our goal is to eliminate the isolation that Deaf/HOH victims now face. We also exist to support victims in healing from violence and abuse. In order to accomplish our goals, we operate a 24 hr crisis intervention line that is fully accessible to the Deaf/HOH communities. We also provide training, information and referral services and advocacy. Philosophy: DOVE opposes the use of violence as a means of control over others as an expression of anger. DOVE believes that every person has the right to live in a violence-free atmosphere. Deafness: The Deaf community has traditionally been viewed from a "medical" perspective, which views deafness as a disability that needs to be fixed through assistive listening devices, intensive speech therapy, and/or by mainstreaming Deaf people into hearing society and schools. This perspective on Deafness is disempowering, as it overlooks the reality that Deaf people enjoy a thriving cultural and linguistic legacy. The alternative, which is embodied in the philosophy, values, and goals of DOVE is a cultural perspective. This perspective--indicated by using a Captial D for Deaf--acknowledges and honors Deaf cultural norms and ASL as the first language of Deaf people. DOVE is an organization of, by, and for Deaf people. All of DOVE's staff are Deaf and board members are Deaf, hard of hearing, or actively involved in the Deaf community. Although DOVE's bylaws emphasize the importance of having directors who are themselves Deaf, hearing people are NOT precluded from serving on Dove's Board, staff or as volunteers. We believe it is empowering Deaf victims to see Deaf persons in control of the agency. As a Deaf run agency, we aim to be role models for not only victims but also the entire Deaf, DeafBlind and Hard of Hearing communities.
- Holly Bise
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