Resources Against Violent Encounters (RAVE)


RAVE empowers middle and high school teens with the knowledge they need to prevent relationship violence. RAVE utilizes the Safe Dates research-based curriculum. Through highly engaging and interactive lessons, teens gain the skills needed to build healthy relationships.

RAVE brings relationship violence out of the shadows and provides teens and pre-teens with an opportunity to share and learn about healthy relationships in a safe, supportive setting. RAVE is a positive step toward breaking the cycle of relationship violence.


Sponsor a Classroom
I Want to Participate


RAVE is an interactive prevention education program geared to middle and high school youth. It’s designed to inform and equip participants with information, tools, resources, and confidence in dealing with abusive or potentially abusive relationships.

When you request the training, you can customize the topics that best serve your group. The program helps teens recognize the difference between caring, supportive dating relationships and controlling, manipulative, or abusive relationships. Students gain skills they need for healthy relationships, which will help them now and in the future.

RAVE is available at NO COST upon request to any Kent County school class, church group, sports team, youth group, club, or organization.

RAVE Sessions At-A-Glance

Take A Closer Look

If you’re a health provider or counselor . . . you know:

Young people usually aren’t open to talk about things they consider private matters – especially regarding their feelings. You rely on observing the first hint something isn’t right. You’ll see changes in attitude and demeanor in a student or maybe trouble in their classwork and hope they trust you enough to share what’s going on in their lives. You know the numbers involved in dating abuse and you know what signs to look for.

And you ask yourself  – “How can I help keep these kids safe and out of harm’s way?”

If you are a parent of a young person . . . you know:

The emotional ties, bumps, and boundaries you have with your child can get in the way of meaningful conversation – that’s a reality most parents face from time to time and doesn’t reflect a lack of love, just a temporary misalignment between our thoughts, feelings, and communication skills.

And you ask yourself – “How can I ensure that they’ll use good judgment in their relationships?”

If you’re a middle school teacher . . . you know:

High self-esteem is tough to come by growing up. Young people today are bombarded with what to look like, how to talk, and what to wear. If they don’t fit in – they’ll get the message and it’s not going to help how they feel about themselves. To fit in, they accept that relationships help establish their value with their friends and community.

And you ask yourself – “What can I do to help these kids realize their own value?’

If you coach young people . . .you know:

Sports bring out our competitive nature and being #1 can easily translate to “I am the strongest!” “I am the most aggressive!” “I am the toughest!” “I am the best!” These beliefs however, don’t always qualify someone to be the leader.

And you ask yourself – “How are we leading and what standards are we setting?”

How RAVE Got Started

This story begins with something absolutely tragic — the violent rape and murder of Mary Murch.

On a typical night in 1984, Mary Murch opened her door to a 17-year-old stranger asking to use the phone. That call never happened and Mary’s life ended that night. Her violent rape and murder left her family and community devastated and dealing with the unanswerable question of Why?

After the devastating shock of losing their sister, the Murch family eventually and unselfishly asked, “How can we honor Mary’s life?” and “What can we do to prevent this from happening to someone else?”

They learned violence is cyclical and those who were abused and experienced violence often repeat the cycle against others. To create positive change, the cycle has to be broken.

Mary’s sister-in-law was dedicated to introducing an educational program called RAVE in 1994 and five years later merging it into Family Futures.

Since its beginning, RAVE has reached over 10,000 participants and continues breaking the cycle of violence and honoring Mary Murch’s life.

You can be part of this movement as Family Futures works towards a happy ending to this story. RAVE is breaking the cycle of violence and ensuring young people learn and realize their value, set their standards, and live with non-violent expectations. Join Family Futures and RAVE in this work.

Program Numbers That Count

RAVE equips teens with the resources they need to build better relationships and it’s working. During the last school year (2015-2016):

Service Numbers

  • 1,215 students participated
  • 151 sessions delivered
  • 18 schools/youth-serving agencies served with RAVE

Results From Experiencing RAVE

  • 98% reported increased knowledge
  • 82% could name positive qualities they want in a dating partner
  • 88% reported they knew of community resources that can help if they feel unsafe

Here are a few printer-friendly tools that will aid in the journey to healthy relationships:

What Our Teen Participants Are Saying

RAVE helped me to feel safe and let me know who I can go to if I need to talk, or need some help.
RAVE helped me learn how to better control my anger and how I can get my point across with words rather than actions.
RAVE helped me learn how to tell if someone might be in an abusive relationship and what to do if someone is abusive towards me.
Our RAVE instructor worked well with us and treated us like young adults, not kids.

Support RAVE

Thanks to your support our program can continue educating our community on how to prevent teen dating violence.  Just $250.00 will sponsor a classroom and equips teens with the knowledge and confidence to prevent dating violence in their lives.


Volunteers are integral to building brighter futures here in Kent County. To find out more about our next training opportunity, please call (616) 454-HOPE (4673) or email volunteer@familyfutures.net.


It takes an entire community to protect children and support families. Those helping us create a better future include:

  • Kent County Domestic Violence Coordinated Community Response Team
  • The Michigan Coalition Against Domestic and Sexual Violence
  • Kent County Sexual Assault Task Force
  • Kent County Health Department
  • Safe Haven Ministries
  • Pine Rest
  • Michigan State University Extension
  • YWCA West Central Michigan



Our funding is provided in part by:

  • United Way
  • River City Foundation
  • Private Donors
  • Keller Foundation

Pin It on Pinterest

Share This