The Williams Lake Take Back the Night walk is taking place virtually this year on Friday, Sept. 25, 2020, but its organizers still hope the event will raise awareness surrounding violence in our homes, schools, communities and streets.
Take Back the Night is being hosted by the Violence Is Preventable Committee which is made up of members from different organizations in Williams Lake. These organizations provide HOPE: Help, Options, Protection and Empowerment to people experiencing intimate partner violence.
One of the group’s objectives is to organize events promoting the awareness and prevention of violence. One such event is Take Back the Night.
This event has been part of the Williams Lake community for over 30 years, but started in the 1800s in England, as a protest because of the violence on the streets of London. The women were protesting because they wanted protection by the police.
During the week of Sept. 21 to the 25, the committee would like to invite the community to do their own virtual march with a few friends.
“Find the Take Back the Night Banner on Rona’s fence, take a selfie next to it, then like and post your picture on Facebook at “Violence Is Preventable Williams Lake.” You can also follow us and share your picture on Instagram at #vipwlbc. For an entry in the draw for a chance to win one of several prizes, be sure you go on #vipwlbc and share your picture there,” notes organizers, Tamara Garreau, social programs supervisor with the Cariboo Friendship Society and Eileen Alberton, community liaison for the Womens Contact Society.
“Times have changed, and the protest now is to raise awareness that violence is still a part of our lives, and we need to be aware of it, make others aware of it, and find ways to talk about it and end it. Violence occurs in our homes, on our streets, in schools, and at work.”
Take Back the Night is an action created to enable large numbers of people to publicly express anger at the sexual violence that goes on, and the victim blaming that accompanies it.
“Not every woman has been sexually assaulted, but every woman has been taught to fear assault. We are told from the time we are young not to walk alone, not to go out after dark, to avoid strangers and to avoid dangerous areas of town. This advice is useless in the face of the reality that the largest number of women experience violence in their own home, at the hand of someone they know.”
Take Back the Night March is a public protest organized by women, for women. It serves as a means for women to unite and voice our desire to end the fear and perceived responsibility women experience when it comes to sexual assault, harassment, and other forms of violence, added Albeton and Garreau.
For more information, or to ask any questions about this virtual event, please contact Tamara Garreau at 250-398-6831 or Eileen Alberton at 250-392-4118.