A parade of men and women will walk the walk across the campus of DeSales University on Wednesday, September 23, at 5:00 p.m. as they take part in the national “Walk a Mile in Her Shoes: The Men’s March to Stop Rape, Sexual Assault and Gender Violence” campaign.
This event is open to members of the DeSales community and the public. Proceeds will benefit Crime Victims Council of the Lehigh Valley, Lehigh Valley Health Network SAFE, and Turning Point of the Lehigh Valley. The cost to participate is a $5.00 donation.
The DeSales University Peer Advising Counseling Educating (PACE) team will host the walk to promote awareness for the prevention of sexual assault and domestic violence. PACE aims to reduce the potential of sexual assault and domestic violence by helping men develop a greater understanding and new found respect for women’s experiences, as well as striving to improve gender relationships.
“Everyone has heard the old adage that you can’t really understand what someone has been through until you walk a mile in their shoes,” says Wendy Krisak, director of counseling at DeSales University. “What the PACE event, Walk-A-Mile In Her Shoes does is to ask the University community to literally take a mile walk around campus in high-heeled shoes, to bring awareness to the issues of sexual assault and domestic violence.
“PACE takes this a step further in their pre-walk educational program, ‘If These Walls Could Talk’, which focuses on four stories of both men and women who were impacted by these crimes. We need our community to know that these issues are real but that we can be advocates to stop the violence.”
Registration for the event will begin at 4:30 p.m. in the DeSales University Center, followed by a presentation on sexual assault and domestic violence at 5:00 p.m. The walk will begin at approximately 6:00 p.m. The program will conclude with some raffles and a debriefing.
Both men and women are encouraged to join in on this event, but our goal is to identify as many males as possible to participate. They will receive shoes to wear, but are asked to bring their own if possible (high heels, flats, sandals, and flip flops are permitted). Women participants must wear their own shoes. Free t-shirts will be given out before the walk.
“Walk a Mile in Her Shoes” is a national event that was started by Frank Baird in 2001 in San Fernando and Santa Clarita Valley, California. What began as a small movement for Baird eventually flourished into world-wide event that has raised money to benefit rape crisis centers, domestic violence shelters, and more. Now, tens of thousands of men crusade in heels for women everywhere.
DeSales University’s PACE team was first established in May 2004. Currently, six certified students assist in peer counseling on campus and discuss issues such as alcohol, relationships, time management, and also provide students with health and social education. Each semester every PACE team member is to construct a wellness program that they feel will benefit the DeSales student body. “Walk a Mile in Her Shoes” is one of the programs that is assembled each year.
For more information on “Walk a Mile in Her Shoes” and the DeSales University PACE team, please contact Kiana Ashby at firstname.lastname@example.org or Krisak at Wendy.Krisak@desales.edu, or by calling the PACE office at (610) 282-1100 ext. 7223.
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