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Intimate Partner Violence

This story is culled from the Aol online News.
You may love it.

Darlene Greene's career image makeover could actually be a matter of life and death. It's a given that, as the founder of an organization that helps victims of domestic abuse, she has to look professional and put together to win the support of authorities and donors. But it's also vital for her to look engaging, successful and, most of all, trustworthy, so victims will feel comfortable reaching out to her. She is, after all, the face of a survivor.

"Abusers rob their victims of their self-confidence. They tell them they're ugly, they're worthless, and that no one else will ever love them," says Darlene, who knows from personal experience that it's essential for victims understand their beauty and value. "I want them to see that if I can overcome an abusive situation, so can they."

While Darlene successfully extricated herself from an abusive marriage, her sister was not so fortunate, and it's her fatal experience that inspired Darlene to start the Ina Mae Greene Foundation "For My Sisters." Ina Mae, a young mother of four, was shot in the head and killed by her boyfriend, a Chicago law enforcement officer. Sadly, these were not the family's only experiences with domestic abuse. Their aunt had been stabbed to death by a rejected suitor.

"The FBI says that women who try to leave have a 75 percent chance of being murdered by their abusers," Darlene says. "I was lucky; but too many people, like my sister and my aunt, are not -- 5.3 million women in the United States are abused each year by someone who is supposed to love them." Darlene felt a moral obligation to her sister, her aunt, and the millions of women who suffer from domestic abuse, to provide a resource for these women.

While the Ina Mae Greene Foundation is Darlene's passion, in this economy she knew it would be foolish to quit her day job in beauty products sales, so she began working the equivalent of two full time jobs. She knew she had to sacrifice somewhere, and she thought spending less time shopping, primping and pampering herself together would be a good place to start.

Treating her to a well-deserved makeover
So AOL image experts offered to step in and take care of that for her at the Diva Toolbox Conference in Boston. Darlene was invited by Head Diva Janet Powers to fly in from her home in Dallas, where we would help her with the simple, yet fresh and chic style she deserves. When she speaks to community groups on behalf of her foundation, she needs a look that says "I am professional, yet I am accessible. This is what a survivor can look like, and you can get here too." A business suit would have been too stuffy, and pants too informal. She wanted the victims she works with to know that they're worth getting dressed up for.

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