A small volunteer collective that wanted to end violence against women established MOVE in 1981. Today they are stronger than ever. MOVE exudes a sense of possibility and optimism. MOVE has pioneered many innovative efforts because of its belief in the ability for men to change and its commitment to social justice.

Along with its violence prevention programs, batterer intervention programs for gay and straight men have been developed. MOVE has one of the most comprehensive national youth programs. The work of MOVE is distinguished by integrating prevention and integration in its approach. Read this Newsletter to learn more about the activism for gender justice that MOVE celebrates.

Adult Program

All men are affected by issues of success, power, and masculinity. They have concerns about meeting the expectations of family, society, and personal intentions. Men are frequently taught to deal with relationships and personal conflict by intimidation or force. Lovers or wives are primary targets of abuse. Men are harshly judged about masculinity. Some men find the judgment terrorizing.

Haunted men end up acting like terrorists themselves. The purpose of MOVE is to begin conversations about the isolation men experience. Groups of men are brought together to talk about experiences that they had. The men offer each other confirmation and support about being non-violent and entirely masculine. Click on this link for more information about the Adult Program.

Youth Program

MOVE uses comprehensive counseling services, advocacy, community involvement, activism, the arts, and community education to end young men’s abusive relationships and violence. The program supports efforts to change. Holding men accountable is part of the program’s work. It prioritizes survivor safety.

The teenage years are an important opportunity to challenge the attitudes of young men that lead to violence. The understanding and skills need for satisfying relationships based on respect are provided. Young men gain a voice against violence. They support the progress toward change others make. To learn more about the prevention education and counseling program services, click on the link.

For youth that batter, specific services that combine a counseling perspective system and male role conditioning analysis has been created. For immediate behavior change, a model of cognitive “re-education” is used. Young men begin a lengthier process to understand the feelings of anger, fear, and shame, and the abuse motivation that brings them to the program. Group treatment facilitates social accountability. Family therapy combats domestic violence intergenerational patterns. Drama therapy techniques capitalize on adolescent role play behavior.

The staff is culturally and ethnically diverse to best serve the client population. Internships involve students in all program aspects. Access this link for more details about the Internship program.


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Organization Recognition

The Federal Department of Justice has selected MOVE as a model program. Information about the program has appeared on print media, nationally syndicated news, and talk shows. California has used the model as it developed statewide standards. The Federal Violence against Women and the California Department of Health Services has recently awarded MOVE with highly competitive grants.

The International Conference of Children Exposed to Domestic Violence recognized the value in MOVE’s youth program and invited the organization to a presentation. The paper MOVE presented, entitled “From Child Witnesses to Adolescent Perpetrators: Strategies and Reflections,” points out many young men are victims and perpetrators of domestic violence. The organization provides accountability strategies and comprehensive wrap-around services. Access this link to become familiar with other programs and organizations that endorse the work of MOVE.


Donations over and above the fees adult clients pay are a vital part of the MOVE annual budget. Donations are used for community education efforts, services to low-income men, and services to youth. There are several ways to make contributions.

MOVE has a Local Independent Charities membership. The organization is listed as “Domestic Violence Prevention Begins with the Man.” Community Thrift accepts donations of small appliances, furniture, and clothing that designate MOVE as the beneficiary.
To save tax dollars appreciated securities can be donated. The current value is tax deductible. To find out more about these and other donation opportunities access this link.

Why Join?

When men join the program, they have questions. They want to know what the program provides. The program is designed to teach necessary tools to end violence in their relationships. Whether or not that occurs depends on the willingness to change and learn. It is an attainable goal. Many have successfully left the program with the ability to be non-abusive and safe in their relationships.
Violence is a learned behavior. When asked if they will be cured, men are informed that violence is not an illness. They must unlearn the behavior they have adopted. Work on their part is required for change to occur. No guarantees are made, but the necessary tools are supplied. This link addresses other participant questions about the program.
The beliefs of the MOVE program are:

  • Violence is learned, but can be an unlearned behavior.
  • Stopping violence is the responsibility of each individual.
  • Today’s culture condones men’s violence and devalues men.

The goals are:

  • Men taking responsibility for violence
  • Expressing themselves in healthy ways
  • Understanding male roles and socialization as men
  • Leading fulfilling lives, free of violence.

The history of MOVE is explained further on this link.
MOVE also uses outside resources in its efforts to help boys and men overcome violence. The Men’s Rape Prevention Project provides opportunities and resources for men to challenge themselves and each other to end sexual violence. The California Coalition against Sexual Assault provides resources, vision, and leadership to groups and individual committed to putting an end to sexual violence. An interreligious resource that addresses domestic and sexual abuse is the Center for the Prevention of Sexual and Domestic Violence”.
Another resource used by MOVE is the Institute on Domestic Violence in the African American Community. This Institute provides an interdisciplinary forum where observers of African American community violence, practitioners, and scholars articulate their perspective. Other resources are listed on this link.