Teen Dating Violence

In 2001, ATASK identified that teen dating violence education is a unique prevention need in the Asian/Asian American community. In consultation with the Boston Asian Youth Essential Services and the Josiah Quincy Upper School in Boston, ATASK created the Waves of Asian Voices Emerging (WAVE) curriculum, specifically to fit the needs of Asian/Asian American youth. Developed with financial support from the Tufts Medical Center’s Asian Health Initiative, the curriculum was shaped over a period of three years and its development included a youth volunteer advisory board from different Asian/Asian American communities, which convened to assist with this project. In 2006, ATASK staff revised our curriculum to be effective with a general population of youth.

Currently, our teen dating violence curriculum (formerly WAVE) can be adapted for different communities – one for the diverse population of young adults in Greater Boston and one specifically for Asian/Asian American teens. With this curriculum, ATASK has educated teens on how to make healthy decisions within their own peer relationships, and how to cope with domestic violence within the family. Our curriculum has four components: Teen Dating Violence 101, Healthy and Unhealthy Relationships, Media and Gender Stereotypes, and Social Justice and Anti-Oppression and can be taught in a variety of classroom, out of school and after school settings. All of our workshops address issues of dating violence, domestic violence, and violence in our communities and how they are connected to the broader societal norms of gender inequality, racism, xenophobia, and heterosexism, all of which has a contribution to domestic violence.

For the Asian/Asian American youth population, ATASK has worked with youth from the Boston Chinatown Neighborhood Center, Asian Community Development Corporation, Massachusetts Asian & Pacific Islanders for Health, and the Josiah Quincy Upper School and is reaching out to even more schools and youth programs. ATASK’s teen dating violence for Asian youth curricula encourages teens from Asian/Asian American communities to think about stereotypes, prejudice, discrimination and its correlation with domestic violence. Workshops for Asian youth include interactive and hands-on activities about media portrayals of Asian men and women, power dynamics in the United States, and how violence can be used as a tool for fear in marginalized communities. After workshops on media, gender stereotypes, social justice and anti-oppression, a youth from the Asian Voices of Organized Youth for Community and Empowerment (A-VOYCE), a youth said, “[I have learned] ways I could help prevent racism individually.”

To ensure that teens who have gone through our teen dating violence trainings have adequate support within their schools and youth programs, ATASK staff also facilitates trainings on teen dating violence for youth workers, teachers, administrators and other school personnel. ATASK’s teen dating violence curriculum designed for adult professionals working with youth addresses topics such as dating violence warnings signs, teen attitudes towards relationships, case scenarios, myths and facts, best practices and cultural competency.

For more information, please contact:
Trisha Mah
Youth Education Coordinator
This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it
617-338-2350 x 231

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