Highlights of Hope

Highlights of Hope

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A grad student wants to bring awareness to the effects of domestic violence by training stylists to recognize the signs. Read on for more information.

501 Salon & Spa Professionals received the first round of Highlights for Hope Training in the Fall 2018. (Photo provided)

People from across the country are ready to bring an end to domestic violence. There’s a mission a little closer to home from Taylor Zumwalt, a grad student working on her masters in Social Work at Northern Kentucky University.

Zumwalt was inspired to launch an awareness-based training called Highlights of Hope to help bring attention to domestic violence.

“Recently, Illinois passed a law which requires salon professionals to receive training in recognizing victims of domestic violence,” explains Zumwalt. “Many stylists report a great deal of disclosure from their clients and have a unique opportunity to provide resources to those experiencing domestic violence, as well as to act as a voice within the community to raise awareness about this epidemic.”

Although there is currently no law in the Greater Cincinnati area regarding domestic violence training for salon professionals, Zumwalt has started her own version of training.

Taylor Zumwalt

“This presentation provides stylists with information about how to identify signs of intimate partner violence and local resources to provide to clients who may be in danger,” she says. “Moreover, it empowers stylists to have informed conversations with their clients about domestic violence and reduce the stigma surrounding this topic.”

Salons interested in participating can do the training at their salon and at whatever time they find to be the most convenient. Zumwalt says she’s also met with individual stylists at local libraries when they’re interested in participating in the training.

Although the training in Highlights of Hope was specifically designed for hairstylists, Zumwalt says that she’s more than happy to tailor other trainings for other individuals involved with the public, including store clerks, librarians, etc.

“Domestic violence is such a pervasive issue that it can affect anyone,” she says. “Therefore, I see value in anyone learning more about the signs and ways to help. I always encourage anyone who would like to get involved to share this idea with their own stylists, as word-of-mouth has been the greatest asset in getting salons on board.”

Overall, Zumwalt wants to be able to help those who are affected by domestic violence learn about the resources they have available to them and how they can leave those relationships while also raising awareness on the issue.

“We can’t fix problems we don’t walk about and, right now, many people don’t talk about domestic violence,” says Zumwalt. “Empowering individuals to have those conversations, reduce the taboo, and, hopefully, reach those need help is our ultimate goal.”

To learn more about Highlights of Hope or to follow the story you can do so on Facebook. Anyone interested in talking more about training can send an email to highlightsofhope@gmail.com.

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