WRC CO-SPONSORS October domestic and sexual violence awareness month ACTIVITIES
RADFORD, Va., Oct. 1, 2009 – As the overall numbers that the Women’s Resource Center serves stands again at a historic level, awareness of domestic and sexual violence is even more important to the New River Valley Community. October is Domestic and Sexual Violence Awareness Month, and the Women’s Resource Center and Radford University have teamed up to provide the community with a slate of activities.
The Women’s Resource Center is asking those in the community to wear purple and teal ribbons during the month of October. Purple honors domestic violence victims, and teal honors sexual assault victims.
The Clothesline Project
In addition to the display of ribbons, Radford University and the Women’s Resource Center are coordinating the Clothesline Project, a powerful display that bears witness to interpersonal violence. It is a way for survivors of domestic and sexual violence to express their emotions by personalizing a T-shirt with their experience with violence. All personalized T-shirts are then hung shoulder to shoulder on a clothesline for the public to view. The Clothesline Project started in Cape Cod, Mass., in 1990 and has grown into a national project. The project’s mission is four-fold:
To bear witness to survivors; to help with the healing process for survivors and for those who have lost loved ones to violence; to educate, document and raise a community’s awareness of violence against women, and to provide a national network of support, encouragement and information for other communities.
If you have never seen a Clothesline Project, we recommend this event for you. It is powerful.
The Clothesline Project will be held from Monday, Oct. 12, to Wednesday, Oct. 14, in Room 250 at Radford University’s Bonnie Hurlburt Student Center each afternoon.
“Take Back the Night”
A “Take Back the Night” rally and march is scheduled with Angela Rose as the keynote speaker. Since the late 1970’s Take Back the Night events have been held by organizations dedicated to helping women achieve safety and empowerment. Most events involve candlelight vigils, speak outs, marches and rallies in order to raise awareness about sexual violence. Angela, the keynote speaker, was abducted at knife point outside a mall and sexually assaulted by a repeat sex-offender who was on parole for murder. Now, she is a grassroots activist on issues of sexual assault. She spearheaded a movement that culminated with the passage of the 1998 Sexually Violent Persons Commitment Act in Illinois. This law enables the state to hold a sexually violent person in custody under psychiatric care if the person has been convicted of a previous sexual offense, exhibits a mental disorder and is seen as a threat. Nearly 200 convicted sex offenders have been committed as Sexually Violent Persons in Illinois since 1998. For more about Angela, click here to visit her website.
The “Take Back the Night” event is scheduled for 7 p.m. on Wednesday, Oct. 14, at Radford University’s Preston Hall.
The Women’s Resource Center of the New River Valley, a non-profit, human service organization, served a historic number of domestic and/or sexual violence victims in has been providing hope and help to victims of domestic and 2008 – 4,226, a 27 percent increase in overall numbers of victims requesting services. The Women’s Resource Center, the oldest domestic violence shelter in Virginia, provides programs and services to both children and adults in Radford and Floyd, Giles, Montgomery and Pulaski counties and New River Valley Community College, Radford University and Virginia Tech campuses to create a community free of domestic violence and sexual assault through services, support and education.