DLIVE program aims to help break cycle of violence

Women play major role in victims' lives

By Frank McGeorge, MD - Medical Expert

DETROIT - Violent trauma, such as shootings, stabbings, or severe beatings have a tendency to recur in the same individuals.

Injuries that bring a person to an emergency department are often followed by more violence, sometimes subsequently fatal.  

Detroit Life is Valuable Everyday, or DLIVE, is a unique program to address the problem, and break the recurrent cycle.  

One innovative strategy is to involve the women in a victim’s life.  According to Michelle Berry, a violence intervention specialist with DLIVE, women can have a powerful influence.

“Every male has a female somebody that they love and traditionally is the loudest voice, because unfortunately a lot of them don’t have that dad. Their biggest influence has been that mom, has been that grandmother.” said Berry.  

"So an important component of the DLIVE program is to engage a victim’s entire social network.  “I wanted to create a platform for the moms of our members the aunts the sisters, you know the girlfriends, anybody that can be part of saving this young man.” 

 Ms. Berry, as she’s known, also addresses another issue.

“A lot of times when you think of an individual that has gone through a gunshot wound, it's typically a male, but there are women that go through that same type of trauma.  I wanted the opportunity to empower these women, give them the platform and basically give them a new song to sing.  Everybody has a song in them; sometimes life will beat that song out of you.” said Berry

When it comes to involving influential people in a person’s life with DLIVE, Ms. Berry says, “the only thing that matters to them is helping me not bury my son, help me not bury my daughter. We're giving them another choice, we’re giving them another option, we're giving them hope, we're giving that entire family hope, and we're transforming trauma.”

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