Show/Hide

PREVENTION DIVISION

Print
Press Enter to show all options, press Tab go to next option

Relationships are often the center of people’s lives, around which everything else revolves. These relationships should provide us with joy, love, and care. When relationships with our family, friends, or romantic partners are unhealthy or abusive, it can negatively impact our lives, causing trauma, distress, and even physical injury or death.  

The Prevention Division envisions a world without violence, and collaborates with service providers, educators, and community members to move our community closer to that vision. Relationship Violence Services has provided prevention education since 2008, when we had one part-time prevention educator on staff. Today we have four prevention educators, and our program has grown to meet the complex needs of community members across Missoula County and Mineral County.

Our work has been spotlighted by prevention experts at the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, the California Coalition Against Sexual Assault, and the National Sexual Assault Conference. Additionally, our work has been featured in stories by media outlets such as TIME magazine, Jezebel, Upworthy, the Oregonian, and the Missoulian

Our team participates in many community collaborations, including: the Make Your Move! Council, the Missoula Healthy Sexuality Network, Invest HealthGraduation Matters Missoula, the Missoula County Community Health Improvement Plan, and the Mineral County Healthy Communities Coalition. 

In FY2019, our team: 

  • Facilitated 134 educational workshops to 1,233 middle and high school students in Missoula County and Mineral County

  • Engaged over 500 community members through training, tabling, and community events

  • Made over 375 posts on social media, resulting in 4,500 comments and shares and 8,900 clicks   

 

Our Team

 Kelly Headshot

Kelly McGuire, MSW
(she/her/hers)
Prevention and Outreach Manager
kmcguire@missoulacounty.us
(406) 258-3838

Kelly is the manager of the Prevention Division and the Rural Program. She writes and administers grants, manages the budget, provides technical assistance to rural program partners, convenes and participates in community collaborations, and co-facilitates workshops in schools and for Make Your Move. Kelly is also in the 2019 cohort of the Culture of Health Leaders program, a three-year leadership development initiative funded by the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation. In her spare time, Kelly loves spending time with her family and going to oula. 

 

Contact me if you have questions about: Grants, Technical Assistance, Collaborations, Health Equity     

 

   
 Mary Headshot

Mary Furlong, BA
(she/her/hers)
Mineral County Community Educator
mfurlong@missoulacounty.us
(406) 822-4970


Mary Furlong is the healthy relationships educator in Mineral County. She brings lessons on healthy relationships and consent to Mineral County schools, service providers, and community organizations. She is a member of the Mineral County Helpline, a 24/7 crisis line providing advocacy to people experiencing domestic or sexual violence.  In her spare time, Mary likes to watch the river flow.  

Schedule a workshop with me. 

Contact me if you have questions about: Healthy Relationships, Prevention 101, School-Based Healthy Sexuality Ed, Resources and Referrals in Mineral County 


Brenna Headshot

 

Brenna Merrill, MA
(she/her/hers)
Make Your Move! Coordinator
(406) 258-3838

 

 

Brenna leads the Make Your Move! Council, an interagency team that is committed to reducing sexual harassment and assault throughout Missoula. She loves to work with community members to create spaces that are safer for everyone. She facilitates workshops that are designed to reduce harassment in the workplace, at alcohol-serving establishments, and at nightlife venues. You can follow her work on Instagram, Facebook, and Twitter where she occasionally posts pictures of her cat. 

Contact me if you have questions about: Alcohol and Consent, Workplace Harassment, Disability/Accessibility, Pleasure and Ethics in Relationships, 

 

 Erica Headshot

Erica Ritsema, MSW
(she/her/hers)
Youth Engagement Specialist 
eritsema@missoulacounty.us
(406) 258-3838

 

Erica provides healthy relationship and consent education to middle and high school students. She is also committed to helping young people develop leadership skills to address community issues.  She is passionate about addressing and understanding how all forms of violence, including oppression, are related. Through this work, Erica is able to maintain radical hope that relationship violence prevention is possible. When she isn’t at work, Erica is usually knitting, reading science fiction, or playing with her dog.  

Schedule a workshop with me. 

Contact me if you have questions about: Youth Organizing, Sexting, Porn, Healthy Masculinity, Sex Ed for Children and Teens 

 

 

Services We Offer

For Schools & Youth

  • Middle School
    • Power Up, Speak Out! Facilitation and Technical Assistance:  Trained staff are available to facilitate this five-lesson curriculum in 7th or 8th grade. Co-teaching is also available for schools that want to get their teachers trained to facilitate this curriculum themselves. Technical assistance and coaching are available for teachers that are already using the curriculum. This curriculum aligns with Common Core Standards for health enhancement. 
  • High School
    • Healthy Relationship Lesson: Using realistic scenarios, our healthy relationship lesson helps adolescents identify and articulate their personal boundaries and values in relationships. Our lesson plans are adapted to work in 50-90-minute class periods.
    • Consent Lesson: Our consent lesson helps adolescents analyze verbal and nonverbal consent, recognize situations where consent is not possible, and apply principles of consent to real life situations. Our lesson plans are adapted to work in 50-90-minute class periods.
    • These two lessons are typically taught together on consecutive days.
  • Youth Engagement
    • At Relationship Violence Services, we are committed to including youth in the decisions that impact their lives. Whenever possible, we help youth develop leadership skills necessary for addressing community issues. Please contact Erica Ritsema for more information on how youth can get involved.
  •  School staff & youth-serving organizations  
    • Consultations are available for school administrators, boards, coaches, and/or educators to address specific needs and develop goals to increase school safety. 

For Professionals

Our staff can provide the following in-services and professional cross-training, depending on their capacity. Topics can be adapted to meet the needs of professionals, and last 20-60 minutes.

  • Sexual Violence & Teen Dating Violence Prevention Overview
    • Sexual Violence: We define the broad spectrum of interpersonal harm, including terms like harassmentrape, and coercion. Focus is spent on understanding power dynamics and oppression.
    • Intimate Partner Violence and Teen Dating Violence: We describe the types of harm that are most often considered unhealthy or abusive.
    • Primary Prevention: It is common for community members to know about what happens after abuse or an assault takes place, but not what can be done to stop harm from happening at all. We can describe a wide variety of prevention strategies that have longer lasting impacts than promoting personal safety.
    • Shared Risk & Protective Factors: If you are engaged in work to make our community healthier or safer, your efforts may also be impacting sexual and teen dating violence prevention. We love to collaborate, cross-train, and learn about efforts throughout the city and county.
  • Healthy Sexuality
    • Consent and Great Sex: We can provide insight into various ways of conceptualizing and teaching young people about consent. While legal definitions are valuable, nuanced conversations about desire, ethics, and fun help provide a more effective understanding of affirmative consent.
    • Components of Comprehensive Sex Education: We define what must be included in adolescent sex education for it to be trauma-informed, empowering, and meaningful for all students.
  • Workplace Harassment
    • Norms and Policies to Prevent Workplace Harassment: Staff can provide resources and recommendations for training components that are more likely to be impactful in preventing workplace harassment.

For Alcohol-Serving Establishments & Nightlife Venues:

Please visit the Make Your Move! website for more information. 

All are welcome here! Relationship Violence Services Prevention Division does not discriminate against any person on the basis of race, color, religion, gender identity, sexual orientation, disability, language spoken, national origin, or age.