Boston Area Rape Crisis Center’s 13th Annual Walk for Change Will Take Place April 28 in East Boston
Registration is open for the Boston Area Rape Crisis Center’s 13th annual Walk for Change, which will take place on Sunday, April 28. The Walk is the largest event in New England raising awareness of sexual assault, harassment, and abuse and offering visible community support for survivors. The Walk is 2.8 miles long and begins and ends at DCR’s Constitution Beach in East Boston, MA. Registration for the Walk is $30 for adults, $10 for children, and free for dogs (who must be on leashes); fees increase by $5 the day of the event. All proceeds from the event fund BARCC’s free services for survivors of sexual violence.
Kennedy Elsey, host of the Mix 104.1 Morning Show, will emcee a morning rally, which will kick off the festivities at 9:30 a.m. Speakers will be announced in coming weeks. Festivities will include a photo booth, face painting, lawn games, and other activities for all ages throughout the day. Check-in opens at 8:30 a.m., and the Walk, which follows a route along the East Boston Greenway, begins at 10 a.m.
“As the #MeToo movement raises awareness about the prevalence of sexual violence in our workplaces and in our schools, the time to take action is now,” said Gina Scaramella, executive director of the Boston Area Rape Crisis Center (BARCC). “The funds that are raised at the Walk for Change are critical to our ability to meet the needs of communities throughout Greater Boston and to offer our services free of charge. We are proud to support so many people in seeking healing and justice, and we continue to see unprecedented demand for our services.”
BARCC offers free, confidential services to survivors in crisis and long after as they navigate the health-care, criminal justice, social service, and school systems. BARCC maintains a 24-hour phone hotline as well as a web chat hotline, and works with a wide range of organizations and communities, including high schools, colleges, police, health-care providers, and businesses, to advocate for change. BARCC also provides training in how to respond to survivors and create cultures that prevent sexual violence in the first place.
Sponsors of this year’s Walk for Change include Patients Like Me, Ropes & Gray, Uber, Boston Medical Center, Boston Medical Center HealthNet Plan, Boston IT Services, Eastern Bank, Goulston & Storrs, Morgan Lewis, Newton-Wellesley Hospital, Northeastern University, Sherin and Lodgen, Bentley University, Berklee College of Music, Boston Private, C3 – Commercial Construction Consulting, Curry College, Emerson College, Execuspace Construction Corp., Harvard Pilgrim Health Care, Partners HealthCare, and Regis College.
For more information and to register, visit barccwalk.org. Follow BARCC on social media: Twitter @barcc; Instagram @barccofficial; Facebook /barcc.org. And use the hashtags #BARCCWalk4Change and #TheTimeIsNow.
Facts about sexual violence
- Sexual violence is any form of sexual interaction without consent (or permission). Consent means that you want to be engaged in whatever sexual behavior is happening. If someone is feeling pressured, coerced, manipulated, or threatened, that is not consent. If someone is incapacitated due to drugs or alcohol, that is not consent.
- Sexual violence affects people of all genders, ages, races, religions, incomes, abilities, ethnicities, and sexual orientations. Survivors often know the person who assaulted them. Sexual violence, which is significantly underreported, also takes many forms, including rape or sexual assault; childhood sexual abuse and incest; sexual harassment; sexual exploitation and trafficking; unwanted sexual contact/touching; exposing one's genitals to others without consent; or masturbating in public.
- According to the National Intimate Partner and Sexual Violence Survey 2015 Data Brief, in the United States, more than two in five women (43.6%) and almost one in four men (24.8%) have experienced some form of contact sexual violence during their lifetime. Approximately one in five women (21.3%) and one in 38 men (2.6%) in the United States have been raped (completed or attempted) at some time in their lives.
- Almost one in two transgender people (47%) surveyed have been sexually assaulted at some point in their lifetime, according to the U.S. Transgender Survey.
- One in four girls and one in six boys will be sexually abused before they turn 18 years old, according to the National Sexual Violence Resource Center.
- People with a disability of any kind have an age-adjusted rate of rape or sexual assault that is more than twice the rate for people without disabilities, according to the National Crime Victimization Survey and the 2010 Massachusetts Behavior Risk Factor Surveillance System.
- One in five women and one in 16 men are sexually assaulted while in college, according to the National Sexual Violence Resource Center.
About the Walk for Change
The Walk for Change supports the Boston Area Rape Crisis Center, bringing awareness and raising funds to end sexual violence. Since 2006, the Walk for Change is held annually in April, during Sexual Assault Awareness Month. Each year, the event brings together a variety of people—survivors, friends and loved ones, students from area high schools and universities, community members, local corporations, and others—from Greater Boston and beyond to walk in solidarity with survivors and as part of the movement to prevent sexual violence. It also helps raise necessary funds for BARCC. Use #BARCCWalk4Change and #TheTimeIsNow to show your support and spread the word.
About Boston Area Rape Crisis Center (BARCC)
Founded in 1973, the Boston Area Rape Crisis Center has a mission to end sexual violence through healing and social change. BARCC provides free, confidential support and services to all survivors of sexual violence ages 12 and up and their families and friends throughout Greater Boston. It works with survivors from the immediate crisis after sexual violence to years and decades later, and its goal is to empower survivors to heal and seek justice. BARCC also works with a wide range of organizations and communities, including schools, colleges, and police, to advocate for change. It provides training in how to respond to survivors and create cultures that prevent sexual violence. Follow BARCC on social media: Twitter @barcc; Instagram @barccofficial; Facebook /barcc.org.