By Darla Shelden
City Sentinel Reporter
OKLAHOMA CITY, OK – Organized by the Grady County Coordinated Community Response (CCR) Team, the third annual Together We Heel walk to end domestic violence will take place on Saturday, September 29 in downtown Chickasha.
The walk raises awareness in the Chickasha and Grady County about domestic violence, while supporting the county’s domestic violence crisis center – the Intervention & Crisis Advocacy Network (ICAN).
Both male and female participants will walk a half mile in downtown Chickasha – many in high heels.
The half mile stroll will begin at 10:30 a.m. at the YMCA, 725 W Chickasha Avenue, and end at the Rock Island Depot, 100 W Chickasha Avenue. Check in will begin in the YMCA parking lot at 9:30 a.m. The program and awards presentation will follow. In addition, survivors of domestic violence will speak about their experiences and how they got free from abuse.
Last year the walk raised more than $16,000.
“They say that you don’t know what someone is going through until you walked in their shoes,” said Eric Feuerborn, director of ICAN. “This walk is a great way to raise awareness of the many issues surrounding domestic violence while having some fun and watching law enforcement officers, members of the district attorney’s office and friends try their best to walk in heels.”
Participants will receive a t-shirt with entry fee. Prizes will be awarded to the outstanding business, largest team participants, largest fundraising team, best dressed, hottest heels, and high roller (most funds raised).
“We need sports teams, scout groups, church groups, businesses, civic groups, families and individuals to sign up. This issue is too important to watch from the sidelines,” Feuerborn said. “Help us by standing with survivors of domestic violence to end the abuse.”
The walk kicks off Domestic Violence Awareness Month held annually in October.
On average, one Oklahoman dies every five days as a result of domestic violence. One in three women and one in four men have been physically abused by an intimate partner. 85 percent of domestic violence victims are women.
The Grady County CCR Team is comprised of representatives from law enforcement, the DA’s office, DHS, DOC, tribes, Grady Memorial Hospital, Southwest Youth and Family Services and ICAN. The team’s goal is to coordinate efforts to assist and protect victims of domestic violence and sexual assault and to ensure that perpetrators are held accountable for their actions.
Victims of domestic violence and sexual assault who need help can call ICAN 24-hours a day, seven days a week at 405-222-1818.
Early registration is $45 for individuals with heels provided and $20 for walkers who provide their own shoes. The price goes up $5 after August 29. Make checks payable to Grady County CCR Team.
Corporate and business sponsorships are available. Sponsors and individual walkers can register online at the Grady County Coordinated Community Response Team’s Facebook Page.
For more information, contact Tracy Dorman at 405-224-4770.