WILLISTON, N.D. - To kick-off April as sexual assault awareness month, WSC Counseling Services and WSC Student Life have partnered with CHI St. Alexius Health Williston, Williston Family Crisis Shelter and the Central Dakota Forensic Nurse Examiners to host Walk a Mile in Her Shoes, on the front drive April 8 from 11:00 a.m. until 1:00 p.m.
This event plays off the saying: You can't understand another person's experience until you've walked a mile in their shoes. Walk a Mile in Her Shoes challenges men to literally walk one-mile in women's high-heeled shoes.
"Campus sexual assaults have been receiving national attention in the news in recent months," stated Leah Hoffman, Mental Health Counselor. "By hosting Walk a Mile in Her Shoes we are promoting prevention efforts by educating our students in a way that is fun but also serious. The event focuses particularly on motivating men to make a commitment to preventing sexual assault. By getting men involved, they can set new standards and become role models for younger classes."
Open to the Williston area community, families are welcome to attend but animals have been requested to stay home. Women are also encouraged to participate alongside for support. Heels will be provided for students, but community members are recommended to bring their own. "It is important to know that we do have resources in town to help those of sexual assault," stated Karissa Kjos, Student Life Coordinator.
"Sometimes it can be hard to understand who to go to for help, and we hope by partnering with those resources for this event, it will bring more awareness and support to those who need it."
A free-will donation BBQ will also be available as walkers take their laps. Prizes for best dressed, best heels, best walk and fastest lap will be determined as D-Jaden Sound and Events entertains walkers. Free Jump-N-Fun Inflatables will be available for kids. All proceeds will go to Williston's Family Crisis Shelter.
"This event does not have to be just about sexual violence," explains Hoffman. "Walk a Mile in Her Shoes is about equality, respect, and treating each other well. Our goal is to have each attendee walk away with more knowledge and understanding of the bystander effect and to feel more comfortable challenging each other to do the right thing."
WSC will also be hosting two events on campus Friday, April 7. All day WSC will be participating in the Clothesline Project, where students are encouraged to express their emotions by decorating a shirt and displaying it on campus. To conclude the evening, Audrie and Daisy, a Netflix documentary focused on eliminating the bystander effect will be shown in the Teton Lounge at 7:30 p.m.
For more information on Walk a Mile [In Her Shoes] contact Karissa Kjos at 701.774.4213. To learn more about the Clothesline Project, visit: www.clotheslineproject.org. For more information on Audrie & Daisy visit: www.audrieanddaisy.com.
For any information regarding WSC, please visit www.willistonstate.edu,
call 1.888.863.9455, or stop by 1410 University Avenue, Williston, ND.