Globe University-Sioux Falls staff, faculty and students, along with members of the Sioux Falls community, gathered on the Sioux Falls campus to participate in the annual Walk a Mile in Her Shoes event. This is the third year that Globe University-Sioux Falls has partnered with The Compass Center in Sioux Falls to host this national walk.
For those not familiar with the event, Walk a Mile in Her Shoes, The International Men’s March to Stop Rape, Sexual Assault & Gender Violence, is a national project of Venture Humanity, Inc. a nonprofit corporation. The task: men and women literally walk one mile in women’s high heeled shoes. The goal: to protest sexualized violence, educate the community, and raise money for chronically underfunded rape crisis centers, domestic violence shelters, and other sexualized violence prevention and recovery services.
Each Walk a Mile in Her Shoes Day event is individually and locally organized. Thus, each year, Globe University-Sioux Falls teams up with The Compass Center,a nonprofit organization in Sioux Falls that is committed to breaking the cycle of sexual and domestic violence by offering numerous programs to help individuals with rape and domestic abuse issues, to bring the event to life in Sioux Falls. A meager ten dollar registration fee earned participants a t-shirt and water bottle and all the money raised was donated to The Compass Center. Globe University-Sioux Falls Director of Career Services Ann Kolbrek, and Michelle Trent, a counselor/advocate at The Compass Center, joined forces in an effort to make this year even more special than the last.
With the hope of increasing participation and garnering more attention, this year’s Walk a Mile looked a little different than the last two. First, rather than simply walking one continuous mile, participants were also challenged to complete activity stations resembling field-day events such as hula-hooping, balloon popping, and Frisbee tic-tac-toe. In addition, a silent auction was also held during the event to raise even more money for The Compass Center. Local Sioux Falls businesses generously donated gift cards, hotel stays, free meals and much more to raise additional funds.
Despite Mother Nature’s best attempts to rain out the event, participants still showed up in great spirits and nearly $1,000 was raised in registration fees and silent auction bids for The Compass Center. Young, old, and even four-legged friends showed up to support this growing issue in an effort to continue to bring awareness to the Sioux Falls community.
Walk a Mile not only sheds light on local victims of sexual assault but often opens the community’s eyes to the reality that this issue affects women and men alike. One participant, Globe University-Sioux Falls criminal justice instructor, Jim Jensen, told local media, “I think domestic violence is considered a one gender issue, and getting men involved kind of erases that stigma.”
The certainty of Jensen’s quote is simply further motivation and reason for Globe University-Sioux Falls and The Compass Center to maintain their partnership for years to come.
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