Dozens of students walked across Radford University’s campus to raise awareness about sexual assault, carrying care packages they filled that will be given to victims.
According to Fear 2 Freedom, a non-profit organization that travels throughout Virginia helping empower victims of sexual assault, roughly 1 out of every 4 women and 1 out of every 16 men on a college campus will become victims of sexual assault.
Teddy bears, toothbrushes and other items were piled on rows of tables inside the student recreation center at Radford University. While these things at first seem pretty trivial, they’ll give comfort to people running from a bad situation.
The items are parts of kits meant for survivors of sexual assault.
“It gives them something of their own,” said Amanda Link of Fear 2 Freedom, which distributes the kits.
The kits are bagged for both adults and children with things like clothes, brushes, and coloring books, along with written messages from students.
“If they’re fleeing a dangerous situation from domestic violence or leaving a hospital after a PERK exam, they generally have nothing with them,” Link said. “So this gives them something of their own and gives them a piece of normalcy after going through what they have.”
“I think sexual assault is a problem on every campus,” said Julianna Stanley, Radford University Student Government Association president.
Stanley said that’s why she believes it’s important to educate students about resources for sexual assault survivors and bring attention to the problem.
“It’s important to raise awareness to make survivors know that they’re not alone and that we support them and we want them to come forward so that they can get the help that they need,” Stanley said.
“I don’t want any of my friends to be affected,” Link said. “I don’t want any of my sisters to be affected. I want this to be an issue that is done with.”
If you’re interested in donating to help Fear 2 Freedom distribute more kits, click here.