HILO, Hawaii – The third annual “Walk a Mile in Her Shoes” was held on Saturday.
The event was organized by the YWCA Hawaii Island, and invited leaders from various organizations to try on a pair of women’s shoes for a one mile walk around Hilo. A similar event was held on the Kona side at the same time. Its a time for island kane to show their support to end violence against women. October is Domestic Violence Awareness Month.
As always, the Hawaii County Police Department participated in the walk… Police Chief Harry Kubojiri and Police Deputy Chief Paul Ferreira were front and center. County Prosecutor Mitch Roth also took to the street. And it wasn’t just government agencies… how about the Kamehameha volleyball team… the 2013 Division 1 champs on the Big Island! Radio personality J.E. Orozco once again served as M.C.
Its standard procedure to do some stretching before the walk begins.
Once again this year, Mayor Billy Kenoi led the procession, which began from the YWCA Ululani Street campus.
This year, the event refocused on what it was originally intended to do: call to an end sexual assault, rape and gender violence in the community. Last year’s event was re branded the WhY-Walk, and it served as a fund raiser for not only sexual assault services, but numerous other community programs like healthy start, Preschool and Aquatics.
But in 2013, the YWCA is returning to the roots of the event. All proceeds from the event directly benefit the YWCA Hawaii Island Sexual Assault Support Services (SASS) program, the only 24-hour, 7-days a week rape crisis center for the island.
YWCA Hawaii Island is a not-for-profit membership organization whose mission is the elimination of racism and empowerment of women. Established in 1919, the organization offers services and programs which include: a nationally accredited preschool; the only Teen Court for the Big Island; and the only home visitation program to prevent child abuse and neglect for 0-3 year olds in all of East Hawaii.