Today , September 15th, I am going to “Walk a Mile in Her Shoes.” That’s right – her shoes. They will be beautiful number 11 high heels and I will walk a mile around Victoria Park to raise money for Women’s Community House. This effort is part of an annual International Men’s March to Stop Rape, Sexual Assault and Gender Violence. “Walk a Mile in Her Shoes® is a fun opportunity for men to educate the community about a very serious subject and to rally the community to take action to prevent sexualized violence – and raise money for women’s shelters and women’s emergency services.”
I am excited to be part of a team called ‘Wonder Boys” – captained by Gerry “Fuzzy” Fraser from Essex, ON. This is a great event that supports a great charity. Walking a mile in another’s shoes is a goal we all strive for in hoping to understand others. This effort while fun (and painful) is a way to open a conversation about a topic that is difficult for many to discuss. I will be participating on behalf of the Parish Community of St. Aidan’s and I do hope that my presence at this event provides opportunity for a conversation about how we as church might reach out to build partnerships with agencies like Women’s Community House to be a visible witness to the Body of Christ.
Women’s Community House is a great resource to the London community. Support for it is our church’s way of saying that we do understand that we are all members of the one Body and when one member hurts we all hurt.
WCH is “the largest high-security shelter for abused women and their children in Canada. Two shelters, which never close, provide emergency and short term shelter, counseling and support free of charge. In 2011, 356 women with 232 children were admitted to escape family violence. These families stayed a total of 17,324 days free of charge. Shelter counselors answered 3,991 calls on the 24-hour Abused Women’s Helpline. Even so, last year [WCH] had to turn away an additional 178 women because of lack of shelter space! Monies raised from Walk a Mile in Her Shoes® ensure shelter services always remain free of charge.”
I realize I just completed another sponsor me fundraiser — your support in that effort raised $4000 of $77000 for Children’s Wish. Thank you, Thank you, Thank you! This effort will be my last sponsor me event this year – I promise. If you are able to show your support, email me your pledge at firstname.lastname@example.org. Alternately you can give on-line by visiting this link. Be sure to designate your gift by finding me in the drop down list. If you use the on-line gift option, would you be so kind as to email me and let me know that you have made that gift – that would be helpful. My Goal is $1000 – I am currently at $775!
You may not be in a position to financially support these efforts. That is okay too. Please pray for the victims of violence and pray for staff at Women’s Community House who are doing such life saving work.
Life can be very difficult. Until we walk in another’s shoes we will never know. My efforts today will not give me a glimpse of what it is like to be a Woman in danger. I do hope and pray however that the efforts of me and my Wonder Boys Team-mates will make a difference and that we raise awareness of the need for us to be ever-present to the community around us.
Now – get set for church in the morning… I wonder boys, can I go there and practice this art of walking in high heels…..?