A special thank you to Hannah Barnhart, a junior at Blairsville High School, for working with Principal Jeffrey Soles to bring Demi’s message to her peers today. Over 350 students filled the auditorium as Demi’s father, Dr. Gary Cuccia, shared his daughter’s powerful message regarding Teen Dating Violence Awareness and Prevention.
Dr. Cuccia urged students to take the information they received during the presentation and share it with their parents. It is reported that the majority of parents of teen victims are unaware of the abuse. 81% of parents surveyed either believe that teen dating violence is not an issue or admit that they don’t know if it’s an issue. In addition, 54% of parents admit they’ve not spoken to their child about dating violence. The idea that our children could be in abusive relationships may be too horrible to think about, but it’s a topic we need to confront, understand, and one we will continue to address through our educational outreach program.