Wednesday, October 2, 2013

Walk the Walk

The Advocates raise awareness of domestic violence


Are you steady enough to walk in someone else’s heels?
Courtesy photo

     Join The Advocates for Survivors of Domestic Violence and Sexual Assault at the sixth annual Walk the Walk, a community-wide march and rally to increase awareness of domestic violence prevention at 11 a.m. Saturday, Oct. 5, at the Farmers Market lot in Hailey.
    Walk the Walk is put on by The Advocates in connection with Domestic Violence Awareness Month.
    The backstory in the name is to bring to life the old adage that one cannot fully understand someone else’s experience until having walked in their shoes. There will be high heels to wear for those who want to. There will be food from Tacos El Sol with a special event rate, music by Live Audio Productions, giveaways and guest speakers.
    The Advocates report that:
- Family violence is a learned behavior that impacts the entire community. The Advocates receives 68 requests for assistance or information each day.
- Domestic violence is the No. 1 cause of homelessness for women, children and teens.
- Children are likely to be physically assaulted in 86 percent of homes with partner violence.
- In Blaine County, there are approximately 5,000 children under the age of 18, and statistically 22 percent, or nearly one-quarter of them, are likely to be living with domestic violence.
- In the U.S., between $3 and 5 billion are spent on medical expenses related to family violence. Businesses forfeit another $100 million in lost wages, sick leave, absenteeism and non-productivity due to domestic violence.
- One in every four women will experience domestic violence in her lifetime.
    Last year, The Advocates helped 516 women, 13 men and 177 children build safe lives, and educated 5,164 students and community members about healthy relationships, safety and prevention of abuse. Immediate, walk-in support was provided 12,477 times. Urgent hotline and phone support were provided 12,256 times. The group provided 3,713 shelter nights to 30 women and 34 children, as well as 13 companion animals.  It fulfilled more than 1,675 requests for support, such as rent assistance, food boxes and transportation, and clothing vouchers.
    Hailey Mayor Fritz Haemmerle has proclaimed the month of October as Domestic Violence Awareness Month and encourages citizens to work together to eliminate domestic violence from the community.
    This free, family-friendly event is designed to give citizens, businesses, clubs and teams a fun and festive opportunity to participate in domestic-violence awareness and prevention.
    To get involved or for more information, contact The Advocates at 788-4191.

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