The saying goes “You can’t really understand another person’s experience until you’ve walked a mile in their shoes.” Walk a Mile in her Shoes is an organization that literally encourages men to walk a mile in women’s high heeled shoes, to help men understand and appreciate women’s experiences.
Walk a Mile in her Shoes is fights to end domestic abuse and raise funds for Becky’s House, a program that provides “a safe haven for victims of domestic violence to overcome trauma and improve their lives,” according to NBC San Diego.
According to YWCA, an organization that supports girls and womens rights, “1 in 4 women and 1 in 7 men experience domestic violence in their lifetime.”
The 7th annual Walk a Mile in her Shoes was held at MLK Promenade Park at 5 p.m. on Oct. 11, 2016. Here participants enjoyed music and prizes while getting ready to strut a mile in heels.
The creator Frank Baird established Walk a Mile in her Shoes in 2001. According to Baird, this organization “started out as a small group of men daring to totter around a park.”
Walk a Mile in her Shoes has grown into a movement with “thousands of men raising millions of dollars for local rape crisis centers, domestic violence shelters and other sexualized violence education, prevention and remediation programs,” according to Baird.
Helix Special Ed. Teacher, Mrs. Claudia Zoumaras’ husband participated in the walk 4 years ago, “I was not interested. She[his wife, Mrs. Zoumaras] persisted. So…I mentioned to my staff that I was probably going to do it. My staff seemed to want me to walk, I said I would walk in heels and a dress if they raised $500…hoping to leverage my participation for the cause.”
Lucky for Mr. Zoumaras the goal was too low, “they passed $500 in less than a week” he said.
Overall, Mr. Zoumaras stated, “I had fun…got to bond more with staff, peers…all while raising money for a good cause. I encourage everyone to get involved.”
Another way of raising awareness is The Polished Man Project. It is an organization that helps raise awareness for abused children. GQ Magazine stated, “about the one in five children around the world who experience physical and/or sexual violence before the age of 18.”
All over America male celebrities such as Zac Efron, and Chris and Liam Hemsworth have painted their nails to support the Polished Man Project.
Polished Man encourages men “around the world to rethink the concept of ‘manliness’ and lend their voice (and nails) to the issue of violence against children,” stated The Huffington Post.
Polished Man described “it starts with painting a fingernail. That nail leads to a conversation. That conversation inspires a donation. That donation allows for prevention and protection.”
Painting one nail in a bright color draws attention, that leads to a conversation, which leads to awareness and funds for The Polished Man Project.
People all over the world are standing up for women’s rights and are helping raise awareness for domestic abuse against women and children.