More than 30 people showed their support in raising awareness about sexual assault for the first “Take Back the Night” event at Mercyhurst University – The North East Campus.
MNE student Darcie Kuchcinski came up with the idea for the empowering and educational event, and organized the April 23 festivities with the help of MNE English instructor Diane Onorato.
After signing “no sexual violence” pledge cards, participants carried posters and balloons and walked to Gibson Park in downtown North East. At the park, they threw pennies into the fountain with wishes, hopes and prayers for victims and survivors of sexual assault. The walkers then returned to campus and released the balloons to symbolize freedom and courage. Later that evening, the crowd filled the seats of the Alex Theatre for an educational presentation of speakers and a short film.
The team said the walk was a success, and they hope to build it up to be even bigger next year. For more information about student life initiatives at Mercyhurst North East, contact Rachel Pacholke at 814-725-7061.