MORGANTOWN, W.Va. (WBOY) — The Rape and Domestic Violence Information Center (RDVIC) is hosting a “Walking with Survivors” event on April 1.

Registration will begin at 2:30 p.m. at 400 Spruce Street in Morgantown and the walk will begin soon after at 3:30 p.m. If you are interested in pre-registering online, it is $20 per person, and you can do so by filling out the information at this link. Funds received on Saturday will go towards helping with activities and client services, as each case is unique and does not have a set of specifics.

Participants wearing heels during a past walk. (Courtesy: Leann Williams)

The RDVIC is celebrating 50 years in operation this year. It has been around 12 years since kicking off its “Walk a Mile in Their Shoes” event. Some people even wore high heels in past walks to really get a full experience. However, for the past few years, the walk has been a fundraiser only due to the COVID-19 pandemic. The staff is very excited to get back together in person and they hope to make the walk an annual fundraiser to spread awareness.

The event has since changed to “Walking with Survivors,” to support survivors of sexual and domestic violence as well as those who are supporting survivors in the walk to show that they are not alone.

Leann Williams, the prevention educator, said that “since 1973 to 2023, there’s been huge changes in the systems that support our survivors. You know, it’s very common to be a survivor and not ever disclose that. One in three women are, and one in six men are victims of some kind of sexual violence or sexual contact in their life, so.”

The RDVIC will be starting up a campaign at the beginning of April to bring awareness to Sexual Assault Awareness Month. They will have coffee sleeves at businesses within the counties they serve, which include Monongalia, Preston, and Taylor. To continue receiving updates on future events and fundraisers, you can find more information on the RDVIC’s website and Facebook page.