Event Asks Community To “Walk A Mile In Her Shoes”
Baxter’s 10th annual Walk a Mile in Her Shoes event featured heels of all colors, shapes and sizes as people walked a mile to raise awareness.
“There is violence against women that continues to happen so this is a fun, lighthearted event that we can have where we can raise awareness and educate some of the people in the community about what’s going on,” said Shannon Wussow, Executive Director at the Mid-Minnesota Women’s Center.
All of these shoes here were donated by local businesses for anyone to grab or even decorate in order to walk the mile.
“It was fun – my wife painted my toe nails and she made my shoes for me. Watching the people out here, I don’t know how ladies do it,” said community member Daniel Smith
A common theme among participants was they were walking in their pumps to support loved ones, especially their children.
“I hope to educate and know that those behaviors aren’t okay, but also to know what to do if something did happen to them,” Wussow said.
All ages attended, but the organizers are hoping to continue to grow diversity in their participants.
“Nowhere do we say that you have to walk. You could roll; you could be pushed in a stroller or a wheelchair. We just want people to come and participate and enjoy the event,” said Vicki Floor the shelter manager.
There were individuals and some groups, including members of the high school football team but the co-founder of the Gender Violence Institute was still hoping to see more men participating.
“It’s really important for men to step up with women. Women have been doing this work for 40 years to end men’s violence against women. It’s really important for men to step up in partnership with women and say ‘yes, gentlemen, this has to stop, period,’” Chuck Derry, Co-Founder of the Gender Violence Institute.
Chuck hopes events like this will help raise awareness to the severity of the issue.
“I had no idea it would totally radicalize my life. I had no idea how much violence was happening to women, what the threat was, how frequent it was and how extreme it was,” Chuck Derry said.
The topic was serious, but the walking in decorated red pumps was just some serious fun.