Aug 13, 2023 | By: Justin Othoudt

Brainerd Community Members ‘Walk a Mile in Her Shoes’ to Bring Awareness to Sexual Violence

Every year, community members in the Brainerd Lakes Area don pairs of high-heeled shoes in an annual walk in solidarity for victims of sexual violence. Now in its 15th year, the “Walk a Mile in Her Shoes” march also shows support for the work of Brainerd’s Sexual Assault Services.

“This just to make people aware and also to help men have a voice to speak out about gender violence,” explained Brainerd Sexual Assault Services Program Coordinator Heidi Fairchild, “And it also makes them aware that they have community people that they can trust and talk to if anything’s happening.”

The event, held last week in Brainerd, also serves to showcase the partnership between Brainerd’s Sexual Assault Services and local law enforcement.

“It’s an honor to be involved,” said Brainerd Chief of Police John Davis. “Sexual Assault Services is a really important collaborative partner to local law enforcement and a real, real asset to our community here.”

“Walk a Mile in Her Shoes” aims to be a family-friendly environment, with activities such as shoe decorating and live music.

“This to us, is a family event,” explained Fairchild. “[It] is so fun to watch people in their heels.”

But more important than the content of the event itself or the shoes that anyone was wearing while on the walk was the amount of community participation that came from throughout the Brainerd Lakes Area.

“I think for a parent, you know, events like this, it’s just a great life lesson, you know, for children,” said Davis.

“It is so good for my heart because every day we’re working in sexual violence and sometimes it feels like a lonely job, but we really do have the support,” said Fairchild, “It’s great that we can show victims that the people that come out from the community and law enforcement are actually out here to support them.”

The event also featured a silent auction, the proceeds of which went towards Brainerd’s Sexual Assault Services.

Lakeland News is member supported content, please consider supporting Lakeland PBS today.

Support the Businesses That Support Lakeland PBS

Related News