A Message from our CEO: You Never Win With Violence

Concord, CA - July 8, 2016 - At STAND!, For Families Free of Violence, one of the programs we offer in the schools is “You Never Win With Violence.”

I have found myself repeating this mantra over and over again in the past months, and particularly in the past few weeks as I have been watching the senseless killing of men of color and the senseless killing of police officers.

One of the things we have been examining is the interlocking relationships of victims and perpetrators.  It is clear to us that in families affected by domestic violence, children who witness violence in their homes frequently grow up to become victims or perpetrators of violence themselves.  Violence is a learned behavior. And, if we learn it, we can unlearn it.

When we as human beings feel victimized, it is easiest to go to the place of finding someone to blame.  And too often, we find a way to pass that blame onto others, whether consciously or unconsciously.

It is much more difficult to understand the complexity of life that we are faced with on a daily basis, to recognize our sameness instead of our differences, to understand the life experiences people have had that have shaped them into who they are today.

It is much simpler to just put people into categories, “these people are bad, these people are good”.  I hear people saying that if you speak out against the senseless killing of men of color, you are anti-police or if you speak out against the senseless killing of police, you are a racist. This is much too simple an explanation.  We all know that there are many men of color who are kind, brave, and good people and we all know that there are many police officers who can be described in the same way.

I find myself repeating, You Never Win With Violence.

In peace and toward healing.

Gloria Sandoval

Chief Executive Officer

STAND! For Families Free of Violence

April is National Child Abuse Prevention Month

CONCORD, CA – April 2016 – We need to talk about child abuse prevention. Every day in the United States, between 4 and 7 young lives are ended by child abuse and neglect. From last year’s torture and murder of two young children in Redding to recent allegations of child abuse by a babysitter in Livermore, it is clear that our communities are suffering from one of the worst forms of violence, one that is made even more tragic by the fact that it is so easily preventable.

Read the press release. 

Contra Costa Family Justice Alliance Says “No More”

The Contra Costa Family Justice Center and key partners,  STAND! For Families Free of Violence and Community Violence Solutions have joined the NO MORE Challenge, a fundraising effort supporting organizations committed to ending domestic violence and sexual assault. Together, they comprise an Alliance that will be competing for $50,000 in addition to the money raised through March 15, 2016.  

Read the press release. 



Donations help now, throughout year

Faith Barnidge's Good Neighbors: Wishing others a happy and healthy holiday season comes naturally for those of us who are able to enjoy sharing our bounty with family, friends and neighbors.

Sharing that bounty with the less fortunate is a motivation for many to volunteer, provide gifts or food, or attend a fundraising event during the season.

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Danville Dermatologist Gives Local Nonprofit a Boost

CONCORD, Calif. – Last Friday, dermatologist Dr. Jerome Potozkin of Danville raised over $23,000 for STAND! For Families Free of Violence, a nonprofit that provides family violence services throughout Contra Costa County. As part of his annual Vanity for Charity event, Dr. Potozkin donated 100% of the revenue from cosmetic injectable treatments such as Botox, Dysport, Restylane, Juvederm and other injectable fillers to support STAND!’s programs.

In 1998, when STAND! was known as the Battered Women’s Alternative, Dr. Potozkin attended a fundraising luncheon where he was moved by powerful stories of triumph over domestic violence. Having just opened his practice and still burdened with student loans, Dr. Potozkin made a commitment to help victims of family violence when he was in a better position to do so. By hosting Vanity for Charity during Domestic Violence Awareness Month, Dr. Potozkin made good on his promise to himself by not only raising money, but also raising awareness of the issue. Over 40 clients showed up to support the fundraiser, bringing in over $23,000 for STAND! with their guilt-free cosmetic treatments.

“We are so grateful that Dr. Potozkin and his staff sponsored such a successful Vanity for Charity event this year to benefit STAND! for Families Free of Violence!” says STAND! Chief Executive Officer Gloria Sandoval. “The contributions from this event will go a long way to help keep Contra Costa County families safer this holiday season. Thank you so much!”

Vanity for Charity is an annual fundraiser whose past recipients include the American Red Cross, Habitat for Humanity and the American Heart Association’s “Go Red for Women” campaign.


STAND! has served Contra Costa County communities for over 35 years and is the County’s sole provider of comprehensive domestic violence and child abuse services. STAND! has become one of the largest family violence service providers in Northern California and provides a three-pronged model of Intervention, Treatment and Prevention services designed to surround the problem of family violence from all sides: intervening when violence strikes, supporting victims as they rebuild their lives and guiding the community as a whole toward nonviolence. STAND! serves more than 10,000 men, women and children each year. Visit www.standffov.org for more information.




Celebrating victory over violence at STAND! Rebuilding Lives Luncheon

CONCORD -- A gathering of more than 400 people celebrated victory over violence at the 23rd annual STAND! Rebuilding Lives Luncheon.

The capacity crowd in the Concord Hilton ballroom honored heroines and heroes who work to prevent or end domestic abuse. The poignant stories of keynote speaker Leslie Morgan Steiner, STAND! client Schylon Stewart, and a flank of Bay Area law enforcement officers and officials engaged in the nonprofit's new Lethality Assessment Program received ovations.

Read the article.