Embrace your voice: This year’s theme for Sexual Assault Awareness Month resonates with all of us in the Philanthropy Department. Not only do we all have #MeToo stories of our own, but we hear stories of sexual assault and intimate partner abuse from WCA clients, donors, volunteers and members of the public at least weekly. Countless stories include phrases like: “I didn’t tell anyone at first because I was ashamed.” “It was his word against mine. I didn’t think anyone would believe me.” “I’ve seen what happens on campuses – the girl is blamed and the guy has no consequences.” Or even worse: “I went the authorities and they didn’t believe me.”
We also hear powerful stories of survival and hope. Embracing your voice takes a great deal of courage after a traumatic event. I am always humbled by the strength and bravery that survivors demonstrate during their journey to safety, healing and freedom.
Since its origins, the WCA has been a safe place for survivors to heal and tell their stories. It has been the place for them to find their voices again and know that they are not alone. As more survivors realize that the sexual assault and domestic abuse they have endured is not “normal” and that people will listen to and believe them, the demand for our services will continue to increase.
We currently have waiting lists for shelter, counseling and case management services. We are endeavoring increase funding to hire more critical staff. Your continued support means more survivors will have the opportunity to participate in the WCA’s extensive programming and services so they may heal and embrace their voices again.
“I will try to be brave. If you do not feel brave today, you may have some of mine. If I do not feel brave, I will borrow some of yours.” ~ Rev. Sara LaWall
Thank you for helping our clients be brave.
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