Nonprofit organization liftUPlift Worldwide is looking to train 500 people across the Chicago area as sexual assault prevention allies as part of the first-ever Sexual Assault Prevention Week.
The week of classes begins April 23 and has been timed to coincide with Sexual Assault Awareness Month. Thanks to a grant from the Chicago Foundation for Women’s “100 Day Fund,” the training sessions are being offered free of charge. Participants must be 16 or older.
“Not many people realize that 1 in 3 women will experience sexual violence in her lifetime or that groping is a felony. That’s why we need Sexual Assault Awareness Month,” says liftUPlift Worldwide President Corielle Heath Laaspere. “Even fewer people know when and how to speak up and take action to prevent sexual violence in their communities, and that’s why we need Sexual Assault Prevention Week.”
Organizers say the goal for each two-hour session is for participants to learn: what sexual violence is and who it impacts; how to recognize warning signs of sexual assault and abuse; what they can do as a community member, parent, peer or survivor to prevent sexual violence and how to spread awareness and train more allies in the community.
“When Trump’s campaign dismissed his reprehensible remarks about grabbing women ‘by the pussy’ as merely ‘locker room talk,’ they implied that showboating about violence against women is just something men do to impress one another. Not only is this false, but it also perpetuates rape culture, a societal sickness in which rape is pervasive and normalized,” says liftUPlift Worldwide Vice President Rachel Jones.
To register for a Sexual Assault Prevention Week class, click one of the dates below:
- 6:30-8:30 p.m., Sunday, April 23, Breather, 954 W. Washington
- 6-8 p.m., Monday, April 24, Free Range Office, 2141 W. North Ave., 2nd floor
- 7-9 p.m., Tuesday, April 25, The Shift, 4101 N. Broadway
- 6:30-8:30 p.m., Wednesday, April 26, Homiey, 3455 W. North Ave.
- Noon-2 p.m., Thursday, April 27, Villa Gabriella Organic, 350 S. Northwest Hwy., Park Ridge, Ill.
- 6:30-8:30 p..m., Friday, April 28, LimeRed Studio, 4611 N. Ravenswood, #203
The week culminates with the liftUPlift Ally Awards on Saturday, April 29 at Catalyst Ranch. All proceeds benefit liftUPlift Worldwide, the nonprofit arm of the global online marketplace liftUPlift, which features products from women-owned businesses. See our coverage of liftUPlift’s annual Women-Owned Wednesday here.