Pamper Fest: A free night of pampering and mammograms for victims and survivors of domestic violence
If you have been a victim or survivor of domestic violence and would like to attend the Pamper Fest, call 530-273-2720 to register. The event will be from 5 to 8 p.m. on Oct. 15 at Insight Imaging, 140 Litton Drive, Suite 140 in Grass Valley.
October is the month of purple and pink, colors symbolizing awareness for two key national issues: domestic violence and breast cancer.
As a result, the Domestic Violence and Sexual Assault Coalition is teaming up with Insight Imaging to offer a free evening of “pampering” for victims and survivors of domestic violence.
The cost-free event will include makeup makeovers by M3 Mall with Motives Cosmetics, mini massages with Callie Moon Massage and Mary Fox, “glamour shots” by Joy Porter photography, healthy appetizers compliments of Redeemer Church, goodie bags and hand-knit scarves from Atria Senior Living, free child care and free 3D mammograms by Insight Imaging.
“Many women put off getting a mammogram because they need to pay the bills and feed the kids,” said Dr. Melisa Agness, owner of Insight Imaging.
“Some have no insurance and others haven’t met their deductibles, so they put it off. You don’t need a doctor’s order to get a mammogram. Women should know that 85 percent of women diagnosed have no family history of breast cancer.”
In addition to community members donating time and gifts, money for the event was raised from the “Saved By Second Base” softball tournament in July, said Agness, who has provided between 600 and 700 free screenings to women in need within the past three to four years.
When it comes to mammograms and other medical appointments, doctors are often the first to identify victims of domestic violence, said Gayle Guest-Brown, executive director of DVSAC — which can often lead to connecting the victim with valuable resources.
According to the National Sexual Violence Resource Center, annually rape costs the U.S. more than any other crime ($127 billion), followed by assault ($93 billion), murder ($71 billion) and drunken driving — including fatalities ($61 billion).
Fifty-one percent of female victims of rape report being raped by an intimate partner and 40 percent by an acquaintance, and one in five women will be raped at some point in their lives.
Additionally, 63 percent of sexual assaults are not reported to police and 27 percent of college women have experienced some form of unwanted sexual contact.
In Nevada County alone, Guest-Brown reported that within the last 12 months there were 632 domestic violence calls (not counting repeats), 140 sexual assault victims, 1,796 unduplicated crisis calls, 155 restraining orders and 1,769 “shelter bed” nights.
While many of the women who will be attending Pamper Fest were referred from DVSAC or the community safe house, the event is open to all women who are victims and survivors of domestic violence.
“All you have to do is call us and come on in,” said Agness. “So many women put themselves at the bottom and don’t look after themselves — so this is a special night for them. Some of them come in broken. Often their self-esteem is so low they can’t believe a stranger would do something for them. It’s very moving.”
“After their mammograms, when the women are all made up, they look so beautiful,” echoed Guest-Brown. “Some of them are crying with tears of joy. This is our chance to ‘love on them.’ It’s wonderful to watch them walk out the door with their shoulders up, feeling proud. They really do seem lighter when they leave.”
If you have been a victim or survivor of domestic violence and would like to attend the Pamper Fest, call 530-273-2720 to register.
The event will be from 5 to 8 p.m. Thursday at Insight Imaging, 140 Litton Drive, Suite 140 in Grass Valley.
To contact Staff Writer Cory Fisher, email her at Cory@theunion.com.
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