More than 300 students, faculty, staff and community members are expected to come together on Wednesday (Oct. 23) to take a stand against sexual violence as part of the 22nd Annual New Orleans Take Back the Night.
Students, faculty, staff and community members come together to take a stand against sexual violence during the annual New Orleans Take Back the Night event. (Photo by Sabree Hill)
The event will begin at 6 p.m. with a keynote address, followed by a candlelight march from the Loyola University horseshoe on St. Charles Avenue to the Lavin-Bernick Center on the Tulane University uptown campus. It concludes with an open mic speak-out and a performance by the Dillard Elites dance team.
The event brings together advocates from several local universities. Students from Tulane, Loyola and Dillard universities hope to raise awareness about gender-based and sexual violence. Tulane junior Charisse Poston will speak at the event.
“Many survivors have faced victim-blaming responses when telling people about their sexual assaults, which leads to shame, guilt and worst of all — silence,” Poston says. “What drew me to speaking at Take Back the Night was my decision to no longer to be silent, not only for my sake, but for sake of all survivors in an effort to change the story society tells.”
The event is a venue for community members to lend support to survivors and to one another, both emotionally and financially. Each year, numerous organizations and businesses donate items for a raffle.
Faculty, staff members and students on the Tulane, Loyola and Dillard campuses also contribute to fundraising efforts and show support by participating in Denim & Teal Day on the day of Take Back the Night, making a $5 donation and wearing a teal shirt and ribbon.
The proceeds of this year’s raffle and Denim & Teal Day will benefit the Family Justice Center, the Metropolitan Center for Women and Children and the Sexual Assault Nurse Examiner program. Last year’s event raised more than $2,200. More information is available here
Haley Ade, a 2013 Tulane University graduate, is a student affairs associate at the Newcomb College Institute.