The sound of clacking high-heels around DeSales campus may seem like the norm on most school days. However, on Thursday, September 27, the men will be the ones strutting around in women’s shoes, as part of the national “Walk a Mile in Her Shoes: The Men’s March to Stop Rape, Sexual Assault and Gender Violence” campaign. The presentation on domestic violence, “If These Walls Could Talk,” will start at 5:00 p.m. in the Commonwealth Room of the DeSales University Center.
The event is open to the members of the DeSales community, as well as the community at large. Proceeds will benefit Turning Point of the Lehigh Valley, SAFE Haven, and the Pennsylvania Coalition Against Rape (PCAR). According to sophomore Peers Advising Counseling Educating (PACE) member Lindsey Wyglendowski, “All of these places are as suggested, a safe haven for victims of domestic violence and sexual assault. They offer free counseling for anyone, and health insurance is not required. No one is turned down.”
This is Wyglendowski’s first year as a PACE team member, and she says of the program, “[Walk a Mile] talks about a touchy subject, one that we don't often like to discuss openly, but it is essential to raise awareness and allow victims to know their options. We often say these things wouldn't happen to us, but it can happen to anyone, and education and awareness are invaluable tools.”
The DeSales PACE organization will host the walk to promote awareness for the prevention of sexual assault, and “to engage men and their communities to stop rape, sexual assault, and gender violence.” Generally, the event is held in the spring every year. According to senior PACE member Guilherme Lopes, the change was made to reach out to the freshmen and to make the event the biggest it has been.
Registration will begin on Monday, September 17, in the DeSales University Center, up until the beginning of the presentation. Registration is $10 for students, and $12 for faculty and the general public. PACE will give out free t-shirts to those who register on a first-come, first-serve basis.
The walk will begin at 6:30 p.m., and male participants are asked to walk one mile in women’s high heeled shoes (flats, sandals, and flip flops also are permitted). Women’s shoes will be provided for male participants, but it is encouraged that they bring their own. A box for shoe donations will be located outside the Wellness Center in the McShea Student Center.
Traditionally, the walk starts at the University Center, passes by the soccer field, through McShea, past Trexler Library, and ends back at the University Center.
“Walk a Mile in Her Shoes,” a national event, was started by Frank Baird in the San Fernando and Santa Clarita Valley, California, in 2001. The intent of the first walk was to raise awareness and funds for rape crisis centers. Since the first walk in 2001, more than a hundred walks have taken place nationwide.
DeSales University’s PACE team, established in May 2004, consists of eight certified students who assist in peer counseling on campus and talk with other students on issues such as alcohol, sexual assault, relationships, time management, and health/social education. They also work with high school, middle school and elementary school students to address a variety of topics.
For more information on “Walk a Mile in Her Shoes” and the DeSales University’s PACE team, please contact Lindsey Wyglendowski at firstname.lastname@example.org or Guilherme Lopes at email@example.com or by calling the PACE office at 610-282-1100, ext. 7223.
See More Latest News >>