Week Without Violence Builds Awareness

Tuesday, October 18, 2016 Week Without Violence Builds Awareness

Since Oct. 8, the Women’s Center at the University of Nebraska-Lincoln has been celebrating the UNL Week Without Violence. The center joined efforts with both on- and off-campus organizations to spread awareness of different forms of violence and make a stand against abuse.

Activities included the No Girl for Sale Walk which raised awareness about sex trafficking; participation in the Safe Quarters drive which raised $101,965 for the Friendship Home, a shelter for victims of domestic violence; a screening of “The Mask You Live In” and panel discussion on bullying and the external pressures men face (co-sponsored with University Program Council); several co-sponsored presentations and discussions; and an Open Mic Night about social justice with ASUN and It’s On Us. The week’s events conclude on Thursday, Oct. 20 with the Voice of Hope Open House to educate the campus community about services and programs offered.

Over the course of the scheduled events, more than 1,700 members of the campus community participated in the programming. Additionally, student organizations and campus departments co-sponsored many activities increasing the breadth of the audience. Co-sponsors included PREVENT, the LGBTQA+ Resource Center, Sigma Psi Zeta sorority, the University Program Council, the Office of Academic Success and Intercultural Services (OASIS), Kappa Alpha Psi Fraternity, Inc., the UNL Ethics Center, ASUN, It’s On Us and Voices of Hope.

Since 2000, the Women’s Center has hosted the week-long event on campus as part of domestic violence awareness month in October. New this year was stronger involvement by ASUN through the It’s On Us campaign and UPC’s screening of “The Mask You Live In.”

“We decided to host Open Mic Night in hopes that students would want to use the open platform to express their ideas, feelings, and experiences involving sexual assault, domestic violence and other topics,” said junior Joslyn Jensen, who became involved with the campaign through ASUN. “Everyone has different backgrounds and experiences, and being able to share those with one another allows us to empathize with and investigate different perspectives.”

It's On Us is a national movement to end sexual assault and rape on campus. About 40 students attended the Open Mic Night in the Crib.

“We always learn from our collaborative partners about additional opportunities for future events,” said Director of the Women’s Center Jan Deeds, who emphasized that students plan and execute the week’s activities. Students interested in participating in future events should contact the Women’s Center.

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