Breaking the Cycle of Domestic Violence

The impact of domestic violence on our nation and the state of California runs deep. A 2017 Foundation-commissioned survey showed that 58 percent of Californians have been touched by domestic violence - either as a victim, as an abuser, or through a close friend or family member.

For more than a decade, we’ve worked with partners and grantees throughout California to help families impacted by domestic violence by addressing their needs in moments of crisis. We are now evolving our work to get at the root causes of domestic violence and help break the cycle of abuse before it's too late. Our approach aims to promote healing for those already affected by domestic violence, while also working to prevent violence among younger generations and reduce the trauma of exposure to violence in childhood, adolescence, and early adulthood. Each of these stages will require unique solutions to promote healing and contribute to prevention.

Together, we can break the cycle of domestic violence in California and improve the lives of our families, neighbors, communities, and future generations.

We know that the complexity of this issue demands diverse and collaborative approaches. To make meaningful progress, we must identify and engage new partners while considering how best to leverage the knowledge and expertise of current partners and leaders in the field.

We are listening, learning, and gathering input from communities throughout California to identify what drives the perpetuation of domestic violence, uncover what's being done and what works, and define our role in addressing its root causes.

To gain a more complete view of the issue, we’re taking a deeper look into existing data on domestic violence, its prevalence, and key contributing factors; but we know this still paints an incomplete picture. Information is often outdated, and there are broad gaps and inconsistencies—particularly among people and communities facing multiple forms of adversity.   

We are committed to promoting healing and preventing the harmful and lasting effects of domestic violence at multiple points along an individual’s lifespan by:

  • Reducing exposure to domestic violence by supporting early interventions like identification tools, prevention awareness, and practices that help children and families most at risk of experiencing relationship violence in the future;
  • Preventing adolescent relationship violence through youth engagement models and programs;
  • Focusing on community- and family-based strategies that leverage collaborations, networks, and coalitions to harness cross-sector resources and create more holistic solutions for families and adults impacted by domestic violence;
  • Finding opportunities to raise public awareness and generate new policies that will counteract negative social norms that enable gender-based and sexual violence and reduce stigmas that inhibit people from speaking up and taking action; and   
  • Contributing to selected data needs on effective prevention solutions, especially for vulnerable communities in California.

Breaking the cycle of domestic violence won’t be easy. To succeed, we need to build new partnerships and engage new funders to support promising solutions. We need to expand our understanding of domestic violence and its causes, and collaborate with new allies who haven’t previously partnered with the domestic violence field. And we must identify and focus on the communities throughout California that are most in need of prevention efforts and healing.   

Together, we can break the cycle of domestic violence in California — and we can improve the lives of our families, neighbors, and future generations.  


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