High heels, flashy flats, and pink flip-flops are essentials in a women’s arsenal of accessories. Girls make walking in heels look easy. The secret? It’s not. They kill, to put it lightly. After an hour of dancing, or just walking in a cute pair of four inch pumps, toes become pinched and numb, and blisters form. Guys don’t have this problem. They have no clue what pain women go through to make their legs look longer, give them a few extra inches, and to accentuate, ahem, certain other features.
The good news is that the pain women willingly go through to look beautiful, will soon be appreciated. The Sexual Assault Awareness Team at St. Ambrose will host the Walk a Mile in Her Shoes on May 4. It’s not your average awareness walk. The kicker? The men participating will have to complete the walk wearing women’s shoes.
According to Amy Scott, counselor at St. Ambrose, the idea of getting men involved in the issue of sexual assault awareness is essential in changing social norms.
“This cannot just be a women’s issue, it must involve men,” Scott said. “We need everyone on board with this issue.”
The Walk a Mile in Her Shoes is an international men’s walk to raise awareness about violence towards women everywhere. As a part of the Went Too Far campaign, SAAT, has been hosting events all this month leading up to the walk.
“We’re trying to push SAU to follow in the cutting edge decision to have everyone be advocates of respectful treatment of women, to ultimately end violence,” Steve Tendall, director of counseling and SAAT advisor said.
The team set up boxes around campus where women can donate their shoes for the event. However, they soon realized that not all the shoes donated would fit men, so they went to thrift stores around the Quad Cities looking for large women’s shoes.
“I got the weirdest looks from the women behind the counters when I came up with an armful of women’s high heeled shoes,” Tendall said. “I don’t think they believed me when I said it was for an awareness walk.”
Although the team has scoured the area for shoes and scored some great ones, they still encourage anyone to donate any unused shoes. They can drop them off in the Rogalski Center outside Nurse Nancy’s office on the second floor.
The walk is free, and anyone interested in participating is encouraged to stop by the health services office in the Rogalski Center to sign up. People can also show their support by signing a petition to end violence against women.
If for some reason participants aren’t able to sign up early, they will take walk-ups.
“We’re not going to turn anyone away for not signing up before the race,” Scott said.
The official race times are 11 am and 1 pm; however, depending on the turnout, they may run more times.
So girls, grab your high heels and boyfriends, and meet outside the Rogalski Center May 4 to watch guys walk a mile in your most uncomfortable shoes. And girls, this is their first time walking in heels, so they might need an escort to steady them.
Anyone interested in helping decorate shoes or doctoring them to fit the guys for the walk should contact Amy Scott at ScottAmyM@sau.edu.