Norfolk Academy is all about Love this week. For the sixth year, the school’s lacrosse program is hosting a weekend honoring former University of Virginia lacrosse player, Yeardley Love. All proceeds raised from the event will benefit the One Love Foundation, an organization founded by Yeardley’s mother and sister shortly after her untimely death.
Yeardley was killed by her ex-boyfriend just weeks shy of her graduation from UVA in May 2010. Her devastated family and friends would not have identified her as having been in an unhealthy relationship, because they were not aware of the signs. They decided to make it their goal to help others identify abusive and dangerous relationship behaviors. The mission of the foundation was formed to raise awareness of relationship violence.
Blair Weymouth Monaco, Middle School English teacher and Head Coach of the Girls’ Varsity Lacrosse team, was a friend and teammate of Yeardley at UVA. She created Lax for Love at Norfolk Academy as a way to honor Yeardley, raise awareness of relationship violence, and help the One Love Foundation. Last week, she held an Escalation Workshop (created by the foundation) for NA seniors. She played the film “Escalation,” one of a myriad of educational tools produced by the foundation, which shows the evolution of a college romance that takes an abusive turn.
After viewing the film, the students were divided into small groups for a discussion-based activity. Some of the students had been trained to be group facilitators and, with the help of a questionnaire created by the foundation, they led the group in conversations that concentrated on warning signs and preventative measures they could take to thwart – and ultimately end – relationship violence.
“I am thankful that we were able to bring such an impactful program to the school,” said Mrs. Monaco. “It’s a great opportunity for the students to be a part of something meaningful.”
Students in all three divisions will have the opportunity this week to support the foundation. The One Love Club is hosting a Jeans Day for the Upper School on Thursday, April 12, and for the Middle and Lower School on Friday, April 13. For a full list of all One Love events and lacrosse games taking place this week, visit the Lax for Love
page. Check out JoinOneLove.org
to learn more about the foundation.