As I continue to speak, with officers in particular, a similar question is often asked during my presentations. That being, “After all the study and thinking about your daughter’s case, what advice can you share from your experience?”

Truly, I have given this a great deal of thought from many different perspectives. But there is no one simple answer. My answer therefore has many parts. I struggled with how to simplify all of the lessons from Natalie’s case.

There are learning strategies that help individuals learn, retain and retrieve large amounts of information quickly. They were tricks of the trade for me as a Resource teacher. The device is known as a mnemonic.

My BEGIN is such a device. It simplifies complex information into a simple form. Each letter in the word BEGIN uses associations to relevant aspects of attending an initial “domestic” call.

Where to BEGIN when attending a “domestic” call:

Believe the victim

Evidence must be followed

Gain the victim’s confidence

Inform and connect the victim

Notes are important

Remember to BEGIN when violence against women, girls and children occurs.

– Dawn Novak