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NSVRC Blogs by Melissa Powers


Melissa is a Librarian at the National Sexual Violence Resource Center and the Pennsylvania Coalition Against Rape. Melissa has experience working in youth corrections as a direct care staff and case manager. She also has experience working in the publishing field as a book buyer. Melissa holds a B.A. from Adams State University of Colorado, an M.S.L.S. in Library Science from Clarion University, and an M.P.S. in Instructional Design through Fort Hayes State University. She is an absolute book lover and enjoys spreading her love for books and the movement to others.

“Our history doesn’t repeat itself, it only modernizes,” was something one of my history professors said in college. Whether it’s true or not, we have seen change, both good and bad throughout our history as a nation. Sometimes, it feels like we haven’t learned one bit from past events.

I’ve been sitting here staring at a blank page for several minutes now, feeling somewhat perplexed in light of this past weekend’s events in Orlando and the trauma that is brewing around me. I’m thinking about communities of people targeted, abused, and hurt. All of us belong to a community of some sort; we are all different and all unique.

The month of April represents a number of things to many people. There is certainly a cause for celebration when you consider that it is Jazz Appreciation Month and National Kite Month. However, around here we have been thrilled to participate and recognize Sexual Assault Awareness Month.

The suffragette and feminist movements have always been something that I have been fascinated with and interested in. As an undergraduate, I chose to major in history for those reasons. Since March is Women’s History Month, I am honored to write about a subject that I absolutely adore.

So, I probably don’t need to point this out, but it’s February and Cupid’s favorite holiday is quickly approaching.  Valentine’s Day is either a beloved holiday or one that the card companies bombard us with, compelling us to purchase the latest adorable puppy card.

So, the holidays are over, decor is safely tucked away, I survived 70 degree days in December, and we had our first actual snow yesterday! Welcome winter finally! It may have waited until the middle of January, but I will certainly not complain. We recognize January as National Human Trafficking Awareness month.

I think I’ve decided that winter is just not going to come to us here in PA. Yes, I’m complaining about the weather, but I’m a skier. One cannot ski, if there is no snow and it’s 65 degrees outside, thus my sad reality. Therefore, if I can’t spend the holidays skiing, what else is out there that can occupy my time?

I have to say this time of year, at the moment, is completely baffling to me. It’s close to 80 degrees outside here in PA and yet stores have taken it upon themselves to bombard every customer that walks through the door with Santa and tinsel. I’m not the Grinch, but I find this beyond annoying.

Cooler weather seems to finally be here, somewhat anyway.  The month of October means a lot of things to various different people.  Beyond the pumpkin spiced lattes, football teams wearing pink (trust me, those are highly important too) October is also Domestic Violence Awareness Month.

I have learned throughout my life how to handle stress in various capacities. For example, devouring anything consisting of chocolate and peanut butter, which might be one of my favorite (don’t judge, I’m sure there are health benefits somewhere) ways of dealing with my own stress.