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Candle light vigil at CSU-Pueblo shines light on domestic violence

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Citizens concerned with the effects of domestic violence gathered Oct. 15, in the Occhiato University Center for a candle light vigil. They read statistics about domestic violence and violence against male victims.

The vigil was held outside near, the Colorado State University-Pueblo fountain. They mourned domestic violence victims. A guest speaker, Margaret Reiber, shelter director of the YWCA in Pueblo, Colo., gave a speech and recited her poem.

Some of her speech included an example of a victim of domestic violence. The victim is a young woman with a baby. Reiber said the victim turned her life around by getting an apartment and attending college to obtain a degree in nursing. The victim decided she needed help and ended her relationship with her boyfriend because she was forced to keep her head down.

She ended the vigil by reciting her poem, “Why I Do This Work!” The poem is about a woman who was a victim of domestic violence. The victim went to the YWCA for help because she wanted a better life and had low self-confidence.

“I’m very committed to our mission, which is elimination of racism and empowerment of women,” Reiber said.

Reiber became employed with YWCA, a facility which helps women who were victims in domestic violence seek help, because she said she believes in equal rights and social justice.

Reiber said she was motivated to speak about domestic violence because of this young woman who was a victim. She said the woman was in an abusive relationship. Her boyfriend physically beat her and she decided she wanted a better life for herself.

She said she was happy to see some of the students at the event. She said she encourages younger people to get involved with the cause.

“My intent is to leave them with hope,” Reiber said.

She said she believes people are able to change the affects of domestic violence.

Reiber said a few job responsibilities domestic violence advocates do are answer calls from victims, keep statistics of clients and monitor food supply. Reiber said the employees must write down important statistics on documents. The documents have information information about victims such as what they look like and why they attended the facility.

The YWCA provides services to people who face domestic violence. Reiber said many victims are women, however, people who need help are encouraged to see what the shelter provides.

The Pueblo YWCA is located at 801 North Sante Fe Ave.

 To contact the facility for information, call (719) 542-6904 or e-mail patty@ywcapueblo.com.