Many students can be seen dragging their feet to class, but this week male Georgia Southern University students will be doing it for a good reason.
The second annual Walk a Mile in Her Shoes event will be held this Thursday at 5 p.m. and starts at the Russell Union Rotunda.
Walk a Mile in Her Shoes is an award-winning international men’s march that aims to put an end to sexual assault, gender violence and rape.
The walk is a playful way for men to raise awareness about men’s sexual violence against women and create an open dialogue about gender relations.
At Walk a Mile in Her Shoes, men experience just a small amount of the everyday struggle of women by literally walking one mile in women’s high-heeled shoes.
“It is an amazing event that captivates the phrase ‘step into my shoes.’ It takes the simple act of putting on heels to show some of the hardships that women
have to deal with,” Angel Salcedo, junior middle grades education major, said.
“This event empowers women and gives men the opportunity to embrace, love and show their support for women. I believe that if a man really loves women in their entirety then he should definitely support woman and their strength,” Salcedo said.
This event is being brought to campus by Health Services, the Sexual Assault Response Team, University Wellness Program, University Housing, the Multicultural Student Center, Fraternity and Sorority Life, the Department of Criminal Justice and Criminology, the Department of Electrical Engineering, Licensed Professional Counselor Association Student Affiliate Organization, the Sexual Assault Student Educators organization, Coastal Harbor Health System and the Clubhouse.
“One of the biggest goals of Walk a Mile in Her Shoes is to get men involved with sexual assault prevention. Many perceive men as not being able to help, but they can do a lot. It is also important that this event is happening on campus because sexual assault has an extremely high rate on college campuses,” Shanna Felix, president of Sexual Assault Student Educators, said.
Sexual violence is not just a women’s issue. It is a national issue that crosses gender lines.
According to Rape, Abuse, & Incest National Network (RAINN) every 2 minutes, an American is sexually assaulted. That’s an average of over 237,868 victims (age 12 or older) of rape and sexual assault each year.
Men are not the only ones who can participate in the walk. Women and children are invited too.
“I’m happy we have this event because it makes students aware of tough issues in a light but powerful way,” Ciera Williams, sophomore sports management major, said.
Men can either walk in heels or just simply walk in support. Women are asked to bring their own heels.
Felix said,”Last year was extremely successful. We had over 150 people register. I couldn’t have asked for anything better.”
Participation in the walk is free, but $10 donations from students and $15 from faculty and staff are encouraged.
All proceeds are going to the Statesboro Regional Sexual Assault Center which works with victims of sexual assault and provides sexual assault and prevention education in Bulloch, Jenkins, and Screven County.