The Synergy Spotlight
Shining a light on the people and programs powered by your support.
Synergy to Share Expertise in Abuser Intervention 
Last year, 243 offenders had access to help and the chance to change their behavior through our Batterers Intervention Program.
Since 2000, Synergy's batterer intervention program (BIP) has been working to hold domestic violence offenders accountable for their behavior, and to equip them with the tools they need to choose alternatives to violence. The program, which runs 28-58 weeks depending on the lethality of offenders' actions, provides a comprehensive mental health approach to behavior change that goes well beyond traditional anger management models.

The quality and success of Synergy's program was recently recognized by Emerge, creator of the first and largest abuser education program in the United States, when the organization asked Synergy to become a certified trainer of their curriculum. The Emerge model is used by Synergy staff and throughout the country, but until now agencies had to travel to the organization's Boston headquarters to be trained in the curriculum. Now with Synergy staff serving as trainers, organizations have another option.

"It's incredibly flattering to be asked to train others in this model," said Dr. Sara Brammer, Synergy's director of domestic violence services. "We value collaboration and are excited to share our experience and knowledge with others in our field."
Partnership with Court Expands Intervention Program 
We've taken our batterer intervention program "on the road" through a new partnership with Jackson County Municipal Court.
In an effort to reduce recidivism, forward-thinking judges in the Jackson County Municipal Court approached Synergy in 2016 and asked for help with domestic violence offenders coming through their court.

As Synergy staff began to work with these offenders, they quickly recognized that many had underlying issues like substance abuse and exposure to multiple traumas that had to be addressed to effectively change abusive behavior.  In response, staff developed a comprehensive treatment model to meet their unique needs.

"Poverty, early childhood trauma, abandonment and substance abuse demanded we adjust our assessment, treatment and reporting processes for this unique environment," said Tony Dishman, manager of the BIP program for Synergy. "Special care is taken to work within a weekly structure that includes collaboration between the therapy team, probation officer, judge, and other providers to ensure best care practices are maintained, affordable, and accessible."
In addition to group therapy that holds abusers accountable for their choices and provides alternatives to violence, participants also attend classes that give them a foundation to successfully navigate the obstacles in their life and address the trauma they have experienced.
News & Events
Sip, Savor & Support Art                   Celebrating Kindness
Help foster the healing power of art by joining us on February 25 at our  5th annual Art Soup sponsored by Synergy's Junior Board! Come sip cocktails & enjoy mingling, savor soup from local chefs, and support the art and music therapy programs in the Blitt Family Creative Arts Center at Synergy's YRC. All participants take home a souvenir bowl created by a Synergy youth!

Honoring MLK with Service
Groups across the metro participated in service projects to honor the life and work of Martin Luther King, Jr. last week. Our thanks to volunteers from the University of Kansas Medical Center and the KU Alumni Association for choosing Synergy's domestic violence center for their day of service!
KKC buttonWho's the kindest Kansas Citian you know? Students throughout the metro are busy answering that question right now! Get your student/school involved in the movement! But hurry! The deadline for submissions is February 2. Volunteers will review submissions and choose 20 students and their honorees to be recognized and celebrated at the Kindest Kansas Citian Awards on May 4! 

Harvest Ball
Our thanks to the Harvest Ball Society for their generous and long-time support. The Harvest Ball was founded in 1986 to help overcome domestic violence in the Northland. Over the years, the Ball has expanded to support all types of Northland social service. Synergy is grateful to receive the signature gift from the 2017 Ball to address domestic violence.

Synergy Welcomes New Director of Development
Jennifer Hurst
Director of Development

Happy New Year! I am excited to start 2018 as Synergy's new Director of Development. I look forward to getting to know you and to finding ways to show you how your investment in Synergy Services is making a difference for the individuals and families we serve. 

Thank you for helping us finish 2017 strong--December was a very successful month in fundraising, and we want to thank you for your generous support.  That support makes possible all sorts of programs that work to end the cycle of violence. 

In this issue, we address the topic of abuser intervention and education. As an agency, we believe that we can not simply hide and help victims, we must also treat offenders and support efforts to change their behavior if we are to have any hope of truly ending domestic violence. 

Thank you for your continued involvement and support in these efforts.Together we are creating hope and change for generations to come.
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