August 2023 IDEA Challenge

Disrupt Domestic Violence

August’s IDEA Challenge is facilitated by Melody Gross.

The IDEA Project is a global initiative aimed at developing Inclusivity, Diversity, Equity and Accessibility (IDEA) within coworking and collaborative spaces. Each month, we will host a challenge that assists you in broadening your understanding of IDEA, whilst giving clear actions for you to take to develop IDEA within your space.

Challenge #31 – Disrupting Domestic Violence

I’m Melody Gross, owner of Courageous SHIFT, a speaker and consulting agency that provides people-centered organizations transformative tools to address domestic violence, and this is August 2023’s IDEA Challenge.


So, why, of all topics, domestic violence?


Because as a child, I witnessed the ugly parts of relationships when violence is accepted. Because as an adult survivor, I experienced the nasty aspects of relationships when domestic violence isn’t understood. Because after holding space for and working with victims and survivors, I know domestic violence is not just a personal matter and impacts every aspect of our lives, including professionally.


This month’s IDEA Challenge is to Disrupt Domestic Violence, personally and professionally. Let’s look at the data:



Companies can lose tens of thousands to hundreds of thousands of dollars each year to costs associated with domestic violence.


There’s also the human aspect of it. Here’s what employees who were experiencing relationship abuse said:


“They treated me poorly. I ended up quitting.”


“They treat me horribly and my anxiety is now high. I trust them zero percent but am afraid to go elsewhere.”


“My job threatened to write me up for taking time off to go to restraining order hearings, seeking shelter, and go to therapy.”


It is highly likely that someone you know is or has been in an abusive relationship! And, we can do better by them.


The Challenge to #DisruptDomesticViolence is an opportunity to unlearn common beliefs around relationship abuse and discover ways to support victims and survivors. For the #DisruptDomesticViolence challenge, I am asking you to take two approaches: personally and professionally. For August and beyond, select one personal and professional action you will take. Download this guide to get started with steps you can take.


By taking up this challenge, we can create an environment where employees feel supported and instead say:


“My job had free counseling available to me.”

“My boss first made me realize it was abuse.”

“My job was phenomenal. I’m blessed to work for an excellent company.”


I want to hear from you. What did you like or dislike about the challenge? What did you learn? Did you experience changes in your thoughts about domestic violence? What was hard? What was eye-opening? Email me to share your thoughts and for more ways to get involved, and join us online on August 30th for the free IDEA Conversation.


Embrace the disruption!




Melody Gross is the Founder and CEO of Courageous SHIFT, a speaker and consulting agency that partners with people-centered organizations for transformative work at the intersection of domestic violence and DEI. She is a child witness and adult survivor of intimate partner violence and uses her lived experience, research, and work with victims and survivors to include families, communities, and workplaces in the understanding and ending of domestic violence. 

In 2021, she launched the Eva Lee Parker Fund to provide emergency financial assistance to Black victims of intimate partner violence, thereby removing a barrier to escaping. Through the fund, she also offers virtual retreats for survivors and programming to understand the impact of domestic violence in the Black community.

Download the PDF Guide
Disrupt Domestic Violence

August 30th 2023
9:00 AM Pacific | 12:00 PM Eastern
17:00 UTC | 18:00 CET

Picture of Melody Gross

Melody Gross

Founder and CEO
Courageous SHIFT

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