Walk A Mile in Her Shoes

Our Voice is a Buncombe County-based non-profit crisis intervention agency which serves victims of sexual violence. Services include a 24-hour crisis line, individual and group counseling, accompaniment to medical services, law enforcement interviews and court proceedings, information and referrals, community education programs focusing on awareness and prevention for all age groups, and much more. But such programming requires funding and the raise needed cash, Our Voice has gotten creative.

Enter the Walk a Mile in Her Shoes fundraiser in which local men take a stand — in high heels — against sexual assault. Walk a Mile in Her Shoes takes place as part of the International Men’s March to Stop Rape, Sexual Assault, and Gender Violence, now in its ninth year. according to press for the event, “Last year, over 300 such walks were held across the country and tens of thousands of men (women and children too!) put on high heeled shoes as a symbolic gesture to walk in solidarity with women.  This visually riveting community event is a great opportunity for your business to show support for the men who are taking a stand against violence.  It is also a great way to let the community know you care about women’s issues and are willing to take a stand against sexual violence.”

Asheville Chief of Police Bill Hogan servesasf honorary chair of the event. Get inspired by watching him and other local men strut their stuff in the video, below.

Want to join the walk? You can do so as an individual or a team. Click here for registration details. The walk takes place on Saturday, April 24 and leaves from Pritchard Park at 10 a.m. Registration, shoe Fitting, and team pictures are from 9–9:45 a.m.; the kick off ceremony is at 9:45 a.m. Says Our Voice, “We encourage men to acquire shoes prior to the walk. We will have shoes available at the walk; however, we cannot guarantee the quantity or sizes.”

—Alli Marshall, A&E reporter

About Alli Marshall
Alli Marshall is the arts section editor at Mountain Xpress. She's lived in Asheville for more than 20 years and loves live music, visual art, fiction and friendly dogs. Alli is the winner of the 2016 Thomas Wolfe Fiction Prize and the author of the novel "How to Talk to Rockstars," published by Logosophia Books. Follow me @alli_marshall

Before you comment

The comments section is here to provide a platform for civil dialogue on the issues we face together as a local community. Xpress is committed to offering this platform for all voices, but when the tone of the discussion gets nasty or strays off topic, we believe many people choose not to participate. Xpress editors are determined to moderate comments to ensure a constructive interchange is maintained. All comments judged not to be in keeping with the spirit of civil discourse will be removed and repeat violators will be banned. See here for our terms of service. Thank you for being part of this effort to promote respectful discussion.

2 thoughts on “Walk A Mile in Her Shoes

  1. Betty Cloer Wallace

    I’m sure their hearts are in the right place, but isn’t there something a little strange about choosing red high heel shoes as a symbol for deterring sexual violence against women?

    The very essence of such “visually riveting” shoes is for sexual enticement, isn’t it? They’re certainly not for comfort!

  2. Robin Payne

    Yes, there are misconceptions regarding this type of event and the awareness it is intending to raise. The goal is to get men involved in the conversation about sexual violence. By having them “walk a mile” in a woman’s shoes this is at least an eye opening way for the conversation to begin.

    We’re asking men to purchase and wear high heels for this march for a couple of reasons.

    First, high heels are one of the myriad of uncomfortable things that our media and pop culture tells women that they should wear. Some like them and some don’t, but most have probably worn them and suffered. This is a chance for men to put on those same shoes and think critically about the ways that we raise men and women differently.

    Second, in addition to making an impact on the walker, is that we be seen and noticed during the walk by those around us. We want the community to think critically about gender and sexual violence issues and we want all of Buncombe County to know about the mission of Our VOICE and the services and programs we provide.

    I encourage people to visit the website (www.walkamileasheville.org) for more information on how this event can help bring men to the table on the topic of sexual assault and gender violence.


Leave a Reply

To leave a reply you may Login with your Mountain Xpress account, connect socially or enter your name and e-mail. Your e-mail address will not be published. All fields are required.