Last Modified: Sunday, August 19, 2012 7:55 PMMen from across Southwest Louisiana will be breaking out their best high heels to get people talking.
Local men, women and children will “Walk a Mile in Her Shoes” through the Prien Lake Mall to raise awareness about rape, sexual assault and domestic violence.
Tammy Vincent, organizer of the event, said the goal is to raise awareness and “get the community talking about something that’s really difficult to talk about.”
“Not only do we want to raise awareness and get people talking about sexual violence,” she said. “But we want people to know of these different agencies that are available and of the services they offer.”
Walk a Mile is a national event founded by Frank Baird and inspired by the saying, “You can’t understand a person’s experience until you’ve walked a mile in their shoes.”
The march was brought to Southwest Louisiana for the first time last year.
“Last year it was very successful, especially for it being our first time to have the march,” Vincent said. “We had nearly 200 walkers that consisted of everyone from the Lake Charles mayor and mayors of surrounding communities, children, law enforcement officers, judges and people from all walks of life. It was very successful in my eyes.”
The event is sponsored by the Sexual Assault Response Team of Calcasieu Parish. The funds it raises will benefit the Oasis Sexual Violence Program (formerly Rape Crisis Outreach), Sexual Assault Nurse Examiner program of Memorial Hospital and Children’s Advocacy Program of Family and Youth Counseling.
“This is an opportunity for the men in our community to come out, put on their heels and take a stand,” Vincent said. “Walk a Mile and show that we are going to put an end to sexual violence.”
Awards, which will be handed out following the march, will be awarded to the team, individual and student who raises the most money and to those showing the most spirit, best strut and best-decorated heels.
Registration for the march is $20 for individuals, $15 for students and $100 for teams of six.
The march is scheduled for Sept. 1 in the Prien Lake Mall Sears Court, with registration beginning at 8 a.m., opening ceremonies at 10:15 a.m. and march beginning at 10:45 a.m.
For information, call the SART at 494-2187 or Oasis Sexual Violence Program at 494-7273, or go online to www.walkamileswla.org
For information on sexual violence services, contact the Oasis Sexual Violence Program or go online to www.rainn.org.