Walk serves as a wake up call against domestic violence, abuse

FAIRFIELD, CT — On a sleepy weekend morning, the town of Fairfield was awoken by the sounds of chatter, vibrating drumbeats, and of course, rows and rows of footsteps Saturday, which marked the 12th annual Walk a Mile in Her Shoes event organized by The Center for Family Justice (CFJ).

Men, some wearing flamboyant pairs of high heels, walked in solidarity alongside women  during a march to raise awareness of domestic violence and sexual abuse that affects not only women, but all people.

“It’s important to walk today for those who’ve gone through our doors at The Center for Family Justice being affected by sexual violence — for the children that come with the adults that have been affected by sexual violence, and for those that don’t have a voice, that couldn’t walk with us today. ” said Debra Greenwood of Monroe, president and CEO of CFJ.

“So we walk on their behalf,” she said, “whether they’re getting support, or they’re at home, not being able to figure out where to go or how to get the support they need.”

The walk was given a musical score by the Connecticut Hurricane Drum and Bugle Corps, an award winning local Drum Corps performance organization. The ensemble led the crowd, paving the way with their drumbeats and trumpet tunes. For the past several years, the Hurricanes have worked with CFJ to show their support for this important cause.

“The Center of Family Justice last year in Monroe donated in the area of $86,000 worth of time to the citizens in town,” said Monroe First Selectman Terry Rooney, who participated in the Walk. “I think they assisted about 287 families. Just recently the town of Monroe made a donation to The Center for Family Justice for the assistance we’ve got from  them. We felt it was a good thing to donate money back.”

The event was attended by many influential Connecticut figures, including policymakers like State Sen. Tony Hwang (R-Fairfield), radio show hosts, and Miss Connecticut 2023 Gina Corloto.

Among the sponsors of the walk were Aquarion Water Company, the city of Bridgeport, Fairfield Prep, Fairfield University and Sacred Heart University to name a few.

Also given recognition at this event was the CFJ program Pathways to HOPE and Camp Hope. These services offer safe spaces for children who have been adversely affected by domestic or sexual violence to grow, learn, and heal. Notable staff members, as well as campers, were recognized for their participation in organizing and supporting the walk.

The event ended with an award ceremony for outstanding walkers. Awards included the biggest individual fundraiser (the event’s chairman Gary MacNamara) and biggest team fundraiser (Sacred Heart University’s Delta Tau Delta).

CFJ continues to provide support to those struggling with abuse in the six towns the nonprofit serves — Monroe, Easton, Trumbull, Fairfield, Stratford and Bridgeport, while raising awareness and money to fight for victims and make a significant difference in their clients’ lives.

Those who need free and confidential assistance should call CFJ’s Domestic Violence 24-Hour Hotline at 1-203-384-9559 or its Sexual Assault 24-Hour Hotline, 1 (203) 333-2233.

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