FRANKLIN COUNTY, N.C. — Safe Space Inc. is hosting a webinar Thursday to address the actions of perpetrators this Domestic Violence Awareness Month. 

The nonprofit has been around since 1995, providing resources to survivors of domestic violence through its thrift store, shelter and office inside the courthouse. Executive Director Monica Kearney said the COVID-19 pandemic has highlighted the need to address perpetrators and try to stop the abuse before it happens.

"A lot of the risk factors that cause violence in the community were exacerbated by the pandemic," Kearney said. "The social isolation, the social-economic issues that lots of folks faced, the housing struggles, the employment struggles." 

She says the webinar, Understanding Perpetrators of Domestic Violence, will talk about actions of abusers, how to start change and how to hold them accountable.

"What we want to do ... is lead our community towards understanding that healing can take place not just from the victim's side, but also from the perpetrator's side," Kearney said. "We want to help perpetrators who might be experiencing being a batterer to understand that you can change the behavior."

The free webinar starts at 1 p.m. Thursday.