FAIRBANKS, Alaska - As part of Domestic Violence Awareness month, this week's 'Community Commerce' focuses on local business 'LEAP', which is dedicated to helping those suffering from domestic violence.
Julia Laude sat down with members of this 'alternatives- to- violence' program to see how it's helping the community.
LEAP's name is an abbreviation of its mission: Learning to end abuse permanently.
For the last 35 years, LEAP's goal has been to help patients develop the skills needed to maintain healthy, safe relationships with loved ones, as well developing insight to have a healthy relationship with themselves.
Executive Director, Lisa Hay wanted to create a program that would help stop abuse in the community.
Office Manager with the program, Courtney Pruitt, says talking about feelings can be a difficult task.
She goes on to say, the staff at LEAP strive to create a welcoming atmosphere.
Courtney Pruitt; LEAP Office Manager>>"We don't want people to be afraid to come. A lot of times the subject of abuse is a touchy one and so we just want people to feel welcome, it's a friendly environment to come in and get the help they need. If you find you're struggling with relationships, it's a good place to come and get help for that. Basically we want to prevent those behaviors from happening before they actually do happen."
For many people, a court order or a referral from an attorney is how they learn about LEAP.
One of LEAP's clients, didn't want to be identified on camera but still wanted to share how LEAP has helped him.
LEAP Client>>"The program focuses on queues, your own personal queues, escalation queues that you know to recognizes quickly and that way you can stop yourself from getting to that point of explosion and anger."
LEAP offers anger management sessions, aiding in re-entry back into the community after incarceration or in-patient treatment as well as group therapy.
They offer a sliding fee scale and other scholarship opportunities if patients are in need of financial aid.
For this week's 'Community Commerce' this is Julia Laude.