UW-Stout News Story

Students take action for Sexual Assault Awareness Month

April 4, 2013

A University of Wisconsin-Stout class is helping spread the word in April about healthy sexuality and how to prevent sex abuse of children, the national themes for Sexual Assault Awareness Month.

Students in the Abuse and the Family class taught by Associate Professor Susan Wolfgram, human development and family studies, are organizing 11 social action projects this semester to raise awareness about both issues.

Susan Wolfgram“Start talking early and often about healthy childhood development and personal boundaries to prevent child sexual abuse. This includes advocating for comprehensive sex education in our schools,” Wolfgram said.

“There is evidence that we can be successful in reducing sexual violence in our community through prevention, education and increased awareness. We are all stakeholders,” Wolfgram said.

Two special events will be held to benefit the Bridge to Hope, a domestic violence shelter in Menomonie serving Dunn and Pepin counties.

•  At 7 p.m., Saturday, April 13, the Waterfront Bar and Grill will host the first Rockin’ for Hope benefit. Bingo and a silent auction will begin at 7:30 p.m. The alternative band Irie Sol will play at 10 p.m. Cover charge is $5, with one free drink ticket included.

•  At 5:30 p.m. Saturday, April 20, the Raw Deal will host Take Back the Night. The event will include speakers, an open mic and a candle-lit walk at 7 p.m. to the UW-Stout Clock Tower to honor victims and survivors.

Erin Sullivan, of Marshall, Minn., is the student project manager for both events.

Another class effort in April is the Clothesline Project, part of a national awareness effort that started in Cape Cod, Mass., in 1990 . T-shirts with messages about sexual assault and statistics will be on display throughout the month in Menomonie:

•  Through Friday, April 5, Mayo Clinic Health System

•  April 6-12, Menomonie Public Library, with a T-shirt design event from noon to 4 p.m. Saturday, April 6

•  April 14-18, Legacy Chocolates

•  April 19-22, Acoustic Café

•  April 23-26, Robert S. Swanson Library and Learning Center, UW-Stout

•  April 27-30, Merle M. Price Commons, UW-Stout.

The shirts also will be displayed at Take Back the Night and Rockin’ for Hope.

Another T-shirt design event will be from 8 a.m. to 8 p.m. Wednesday, April 10, at the UW-Stout Ally Center in the Memorial Student Center.

The Clothesline Project student manager is Trisha Libansky, of Richland Center. For more information on the national program, click here.

Sexual Assault Awareness Month logo“This traveling art is a collective testimony that shows the prevalence of sexual violence in our own community and the need for individuals to take a stand and help make our society a safer place,” Wolfgram said.

Also in April, interactive presentations on healthy sexuality and preventing child sex abuse will be made by students at eight sites in Dunn, Eau Claire, Pierce and St. Croix counties. The sites and student project managers are:

•  Dunn County Jail; Ronnie Moltzau, of Osseo

•  Eau Claire County Jail; Shelby Tisdale, of Eau Claire

•  Transitions Center in Eau Claire for ex-offenders; Kristin Ziehl, of Greenville

•  Northwest Juvenile Detention Center in Eau Claire; Nick Vanzile, of Antigo

•  New Richmond High School; Amber Roberts, of Greenville

•  River Falls High School; Abby Grenson, of Anoka, Minn.

•  Menomonie Middle School; Julia Frank, of Elmwood

•  Hmong Mutual Assistance Association in Eau Claire; Sarah Estes, of Albert Lea, Minn.

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