MILWAUKEE, WI — Men will walk the streets in high heels for the second year in a row in hopes of raising awareness for a serious subject-domestic violence. Scheduled for Sunday, May 4, Walk a Mile in Her Shoes Presented by Verizon Wireless is a unique men's march that invites all members of the community to literally walk a mile in women's shoes to raise awareness and funds for programs that help those affected by domestic violence.
The Walk's goal is to inform the community of the valuable contributions men are making to stop domestic violence, sexual assault and gender violence-and to educate the community and raise much needed funds for the domestic violence support and prevention programs of Sojourner Truth House, Task Force on Family Violence and Jewish Family Services.
"Sojourner Truth House, Task Force on Family Violence and Jewish Family Services have a shared mission: to help those in need of immediate care and counseling as well as ongoing support," says Angela Mancuso, executive director, Sojourner Truth House. "Domestic violence is a silent epidemic that impacts the lives of many-not just the individuals who are physically harmed. Therefore, we hope that with these organizations joining forces, we can successfully increase awareness and decrease the number of lives affected."
The march will begin at 11:00 a.m., May 4, with registration starting at 9:30 a.m. at the Marquette University Central Mall, located behind Raynor Library, 1355 E. W. Wisconsin Ave., Milwaukee. Men, women and children are invited to participate, and walk-in registrants are welcome. Registration fees are $20 for adults, $10 for students and no charge for children under age 12. Men are encouraged (but not required) to walk in women's high-heeled shoes, which will be available in all sizes for use.
Verizon Wireless is the presenting sponsor of the Walk a Mile in Her Shoes event. The company is a recognized corporate leader for its commitment to preventing domestic violence and raising awareness of the issue.
"Domestic violence is a problem that not only affects women-it impacts men, children and community as a whole," says T.J. Foxregion president for Verizon Wireless. "By sponsoring Walk a Mile in Her Shoes, we hope to reduce domestic violence and make a positive impact in Milwaukee. We are honored to be a driving force behind the event and anticipate a huge turnout by our Verizon Wireless employees and the community at large."
The march is also being supported by local community leaders including Deputy District Attorney Kent Lovern. "Violence against women is a public health issue that needs to be addressed in our community," says Lovern. "I am excited to be part of this event to increase support, but most of all to increase awareness."
In conjunction with the Walk a Mile in Her Shoes march, Verizon Wireless also will be collecting phones for its HopeLine® program. Through its award-winning HopeLine Program, the company collects no-longer-used wireless phones and accessories from any wireless service provider. Most of the donated phones and equipment are refurbished and sold, with proceeds going to support domestic violence awareness and prevention programs, including those in Wisconsin. Any remaining phones are recycled in an environmentally sound way.
Funds raised from the walk will be used to for domestic violence support and prevention programs of Sojourner Truth House, Task Force on Family Violence and Jewish Family Services.
- Sojourner Truth House provides shelter, safety, support, education and advocacy to break the cycle of violence. The organization strives to offer every victim of domestic violence access to effective and complete programs to achieve a life free of violence.
- Task Force on Family Violence annually serves more than 5,000 Milwaukee-area victims through legal and employment advocacy programs. In addition, nearly 500 abusers are served through the organization's Domestic Abuse Intervention Project (DAIP). The agency also works with policy makers to implement more effective legislation, enforcement and inter-agency cooperation.
- Jewish Family Services was founded in 1867 and provides vital social services to the Milwaukee community, regardless of faith or affiliation. CHAI, the Jewish Coalition on Interpersonal Violence and a program within JFS, began in 1997 with a focus on increasing the awareness of domestic violence within the Jewish community. Its goal is to address the needs of women living in abusive relationships. JFS is committed to providing services through direct case management, referrals and advocacy work.