By Denise Koch

BALTIMORE (WJZ) — One in four women and one in seven men will be impacted by domestic violence in their lifetime. Shock Trauma now has a new program to help victims recover.

October is Domestic Violence Awareness Month, and as it comes to a close, a local dance company is doing its part to raise money and awareness for programs that help when a loved one becomes an abuser.

To prepare for their “Unshamed” piece, the Full Circle Dance Company met with the women The Bridge Program were helping to recover from domestic violence.

“These women that we talked to are extremely brave, extremely inspiring and so we really take it to heart and want to tell their story the right way,” says dancer Alison Powell.

Donna Jacobs choreographed the dance. She is also senior vice president at the University of Maryland Medical System so she’s seen the patients, the women wounded by domestic violence.

“We often find that by using dance we can get people to think about common problems in a different way,” Jacobs says. “Particularly for domestic violence where secrecy and shame may be prevalent.”

Tara Carlson works for Shock Trauma’s violence prevention program and runs The Bridge Program, where last year they treated about 30 women a month.

“The dance is inspiring, it is moving,” Carlson says.

“If people walk away and say this is a problem that needs to come out of the closet and I need to be responsible and accountable, someone who I know may be suffering, that would be quite an accomplishment,” Jacobs says.

The Bridge Program is funded only by grants and donations, so they really hope to sell a lot of tickets to the performance this weekend.

“Unshamed” will be performed on Saturday and Sunday at Brooklyn’s Chesapeake Arts Center. For more information, visit

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