One of the most important things for students to know is that they are supported, especially students who have suffered assault. Students Against Assault is providing a safe place for survivors of assault to go by hosting their first annual Survivor’s Gala April 9 from 7-11 p.m. in the Student Union Apollo room.
The event will be a black-tie affair.
“We aim to help educate people on what assault is, how to help prevent it and how to help people that have been affected by it. We wanted to be a safe for people who have been affected by assault to go to and get support,” said Jessika Polley, president of Students Against Assault.
The purpose of the gala is to support survivors and allow them a safe place to share their story as well as giving others the chance to learn about assault.
“We will have a presentation about what assault is and give a basis on what our organization talks about. Then, we will open the floor to survivors or anyone who [wants to speak]; whether they tell their story or share a poem. There will be food and dance as well,” Polley said.
If you are a survivor of assault and might be hesitant to attend the gala or speak to someone, Students Against Assault emphasizes their support and the safety of this event and their organization.
“The gala will be a safe space. If they are skittish or worried about attending, they don’t have to come up and talk; they can just have fun, listen to people, socialize and dance,” said Polley. “If there is someone who needs someone to talk to about their assault or about what’s bugging them, we are more than willing to help them get what they need and be there for them. We want to be that safe place for everyone to go. We’re here to support you no matter what.”
It is vital to know that you are not alone in this world and there are people who want to help.
“With assault, people feel ashamed that it happened to them and we want to make sure people know that it’s not your fault,” said Emma Romohr, future treasurer for Students Against Assault.
“We want to get rid of victim-blaming,” said Polley.
For admission, students pay $25, faculty, staff and community members pay $35, and if you are with the ROTC, a military member or police officer, admission is $20. Tickets go into a raffle for a prize.