After 16 years, an annual event in San Luis Obispo County to raise awareness about sexual violence while encouraging community members to take action is no more.
RISE announced Thursday it has retired the Walk a Mile in Her Shoes event.
“After extensive discussion, market research, and feedback from RISE staff, board members, and community supporters alike, RISE has decided to retire the Walk a Mile in Her Shoes event. This decision was made in an effort to address some of the problematic messaging of Walk a Mile as well as a pattern of declining revenue and attendance,” organizers said in a press release.
“RISE’s goal is to create an inclusive, empowering event that speaks to the experiences of all survivors and we weren’t meeting that goal with Walk a Mile” said Jennifer Adams, RISE executive director. “However, we are incredibly grateful for those who have attended, donated, and supported survivors through Walk a Mile over the years. We hope to carry forward the progress, momentum, and support established by Walk a Mile, while continuing to empower allies, raise awareness, and bring together SLO County to support survivors.”
Walk a Mile in Her Shoes encouraged men and women to put on high heels and walk a mile.
Events, which took place in April during Sexual Assault Awareness Month, have been held in Paso Robles, San Luis Obispo, Arroyo Grande, and even at Cuesta College as “an act of solidarity with survivors of sexual assault and a conversation starter about the difficult topic.”
Rise says this year, it will instead be hosting RISE Up & Rock. The April 27 family-friendly benefit concert will take place at SLO Brew Rock in San Luis Obispo.