This year marks the tenth anniversary of Walk a Mile in Her Shoes Waterloo Region presented by Meridian. The walk, historically a men’s walk now open to folks of all genders, aims to raise awareness in our community about the serious and persisting prevalence of gender-based violence.
The premise is simple: participants register as a team or individual, raise pledges and rally together to walk a few blocks alongside neighbours, colleagues, friends and family. This community-building event brings everyone together in an afternoon of fundraising, celebration, music, food and fun for the whole family.
It’s been ten years and the issue of gender-based violence still lingers. According to the Canadian Women’s Foundation, approximately every six days, a woman in Canada is killed by her intimate partner, and Canadians collectively spend $7.4 billion in dealing with the aftermath of spousal violence alone. According to the same report, “half of women in Canada have experienced at least one incident of physical or sexual violence since the age of 16.”
That’s why we walk. That’s why we need more people to join us in raising awareness about gender-based violence.
What’s most important about this walk is the participation of men and other allies because cis, trans and non-binary women alone can’t be responsible for ending gender-based violence. Everyone has a part in making that happen. There are, of course, some amazing men in this community who participate in Walk a Mile every year, and in fact, they will be honoured at the post-walk celebration at City Hall.
But we need more allies. We need more folks to see the value in showing their support for the movement and their commitment to doing their part in abolishing gender-based violence.
Walk a Mile in Her Shoes is about building solidarity around equity and safety in our community, and supporting an organization whose mandate it is to support all women and girls. Please walk with us. If you can’t walk, you can still donate.
The funds raised from the walk will support YWCA Cambridge’s local programming aimed to empower, embolden and protect cis, trans and non-binary women and girls, as well as deliver programming around allyship for men and boys.
Thank you to those who are already participating and those who have donated. Thanks especially to our sponsor Meridian for their generous support of Walk a Mile in Her Shoes Waterloo Region.
The 2019 Walk a Mile in Her Shoes walk takes place Saturday May 25, at 12:00 p.m.
Find out more about the walk, how to register and how to donate.
Photo courtesy Emily Beatty Imagery.