Men Strap on Heels to Support Rape and Abuse Victims

5 years 4 days 15 hours ago June 21, 2012 Jun 21, 2012 Thursday, June 21 2012 Thursday, June 21, 2012 6:54:00 PM CDT in News
By: Joe Chiodo
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JEFFERSON CITY - Men and boys kicked off their shoes to strap on high heels Thursday as part of a fundraiser held by the organization "Walk a Mile in Her Shoes."  It is only the second year men will walk in heels as part of the 11th annual "Shoes, Blues and Barbecue" fundraiser that raises money for the Jefferson City Rape and Abuse Crisis Service (RACS).

Close to 50 men walked the trails at Jefferson City's Memorial Lake Park in high heel shoes. The event is designed to raise awareness and funds for victims of domestic and sexual violence. According to the Rape, Abuse, and Incest National Network, someone in the U.S. is sexually assaulted every two minutes. Each year more than 200 thousand people are victims of sexual assault.

Jim Clardy, the Executive Director of RACS, says the idea to have men walk in heels came after male participation was extremely low at fundraisers in previous years.

Although the event is planned for men to walk the mile in high heels, women could also participate. The event also included a barbecue and the Megan Boyer Band, based out of Columbia, provided entertainment for the evening.

Officers from the Cole County Sheriff's Department and the Jefferson City Police Department also took part in the walk.

To participate, walkers donated $30 for individuals, $75 for a team of three, and $120 for a team of five. Last year the event raised about $14,000.  Clardy told KOMU 8 this year's goal is to raise $20,000.

RACS has a 36-bed shelter in Jefferson City that reaches nine counties and about 250 women and children. The service also works in hospitals, courtrooms, operates a hotline, and partners with Safe Harbor Animal Sanctuary for pets brought in with the men and women from abusive environments. Both men and women are served by the Rape and Abuse Crisis Service. Although men are not allowed in the shelters, the service provides hotel and counseling accommodations.

For more information on this year's event and how to help, check out the "Shoes, Blues, and BBQ" website.

 

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