Archived Story

Men asked to walk a mile in women’s shoes

Published 8:00am Thursday, July 10, 2014

For the second year, men living in Cass County will have the opportunity to walk a mile in the shoes of the other gender.

Literally.

Registration for this year’s Walk a Mile in Her Shoes fundraiser are now open. Proceeds from the walkathon, which is will be held Aug. 9 at the Dowagiac High School APEX Field, will go toward the Domestic and Sexual Abuse Services, which provides services for abuse victims in Cass, St. Joseph and Van Buren counties.

During the event, participants will walk a mile around the high school track, with male entrants encouraged to wear a pair of high heels provided on-site by volunteers.

“The premise is to look a little silly and step out of your comfort zone to raise money for a good cause,” said Kim Kramer, executive director of DASAS and co-chair of the event. “It’s a lighthearted event with a very serious meaning behind it.”

Donations for the event are collected through two methods: sponsorships from businesses, churches or service organizations, or via pledges collected by walkers prior to the event from family, coworkers and friends.

While groups are encouraged to donate what they can as an organization, Kramer said that members can individually raise money from pledges and pool their totals together during the event.

“We have had groups that have raised over a $1,000 because they went out and got pledges,” Kramer said. “They can really make a big impact that way.”

Walk a Mile in Her Shoes is an international event held in communities across the globe to raise awareness for victims of sexual abuse and gender violence. The staff of DASAS brought it to Cass County for the first time last year, with around 50 participants raising $6,9000.

This year, DASAS is looking to raise $15,000. The money generated from the event will be used to support the organization’s staff, shelter and other general needs, Kramer said.

“Our federal grants and other such funding gets cut yearly, so we really rely our local residents, businesses and organizations for support,” she said.

Whether they walk a lap or an entire mile in heels, participants are encouraged to come out next month and show their support in the fight to end domestic and sexual abuse.

“When people come to support [abuse] survivors and their children, it sends a good message to the rest of the community,” Kramer said.

People or groups interested in registering for the event can do so online at http://www.dasasmi.org or by contacting Kramer at 269-273-6154, extension 102.

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