“I was just reading of your organization while awaiting my MRI appointment. I was a victim of a horrific assault a year and a half ago. I was brutally beaten but managed to fight and survive. Please tell me how I might be of help to others by sharing my experience. Thank you.”
Personal safety and violence prevention initiatives are critical for raising awareness about sexual assault and misconduct and other forms of violence against women and teens. These initiatives also advance social change.
Studies confirm that education about personal safety, self-protection and sexual harassment dramatically reduces a person's chances of being the victim of physical violence or sexual misconduct.
A single act of courage is often the catalyst for extraordinary change. Every woman or teen who shares their personal experience of sexual assault or misconduct can inspire another to do the same. They are not alone and they are "VOICES FOR A CAUSE®"!
Every 98 seconds someone in the U.S. is sexually assaulted. Unfortunately, we live in a culture that reinforces the normalization of sexual violence. It is an epidemic that must not be hidden or tolerated anymore.
Since 2007, the National Organization for Women’s Safety Awareness, Inc. (“NOWSA”) has been raising awareness about the prevalence of sexual assault and other forms of violence, and harassment against women and teens in our society. The NOWSA focuses on prevention, risk reduction and avoidance through its educational programs, initiatives and events.
The NOWSA, a 501(c)(3) non-profit charity, reaches out to individuals, civic and corporate partners, schools, colleges, universities, public safety departments, government agencies and other organizations to encourage social change and advance the message that sexual misconduct and violence against women and teens must not be tolerated. The NOWSA asks them to become “Voices for a Cause®”.
The NOWSA also gives victims of sexual assault, violence, and harassment a forum where they can “Be a Voice” and share their personal stories of tragedy and triumph in an effort to help build confidence and self-esteem in themselves and others while advancing change in inappropriate and unacceptable attitudes and behaviors.
Here are some examples of why “Voices” matter:
Women and Teens have the inalienable right to live safe and violence-free lives. Individuals and communities everywhere must take responsibility and take action to help maintain this fundamental freedom.
“Thanks for letting me share my story with you. It’s such a great part of my own personal closure. I have to say, I didn’t think I would ever write it down or let others see it. It felt really good to write it, so thank you for that. My hope is that maybe this story will help at least one other girl not to remain silent. ”
“I have decided to share my story to regain a sense of control over myself and the reality of the incident that occurred. I want everyone to know that they should not be embarrassed to say they have been a victim of a sexual assault because sharing their story can help others. I also tell my story with the hope of inspiring other women to seek help, let them know they are not alone, and tell them that it's OK to speak up! The act of sharing and telling is an act of empowerment, a way to reassert control over my life. My name is Randi. I was a victim and now I am a Voice.”
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“I’m truly blessed to be able to have the opportunity to share my story….it heals a part of me knowing it might help someone else so thank you again for sharing it at your event."