The Wittenberg Sexual Assault Advocacy and Prevention Program (SAAP) is partnering with Project Woman, a local organization dedicated to ending domestic violence and sexual assault, to host the Clothesline Project in the Benham-Pence Student Center on Monday and Tuesday, Oct. 26-27. It is a kick-off event of sorts for SAAP, and it is significant that the event is taking place in October, which is Domestic Violence Awareness Month.
For members of SAAP, the Clothesline Project, a nationwide program created in the 1990s to create t-shirt displays to bear witness to violence against women, is a fitting first project. The t-shirts, some of which were designed by Wittenberg students earlier this month, will hang prominently in the student center, and members of SAAP and Project Woman will be available to hand out literature throughout the two days.
"We're not just advocates, we're educators," said Abbey Jones, class of 2012 from Youngstown, Ohio. "We want to make sure that people's voices are heard, and that everyone has the correct information.
"Members of the organization will be there for anyone who is sexually assaulted, to support, provide referral information or just to listen. I feel like this will take us full circle, and it will lay a foundation for a grassroots effort of sorts."
Twelve Wittenberg students comprise the current core group, but Jones and the program's staff advisor, Director of Multicultural Student Programs and the W.A.G.E. Womyn's Center Forest Wortham, hope that is just the beginning. SAAP is scheduling two-hour training sessions for new members, conducted by the Clark-Champaign Reproductive Health Education Collaborative and Project Woman, and a brochure has been printed to get the word out.
Jones said SAAP will meet once a month. Future events include education programs and guest speakers.
Written by: Ryan Maurer
Photo by: Erin Pence
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