BENEFITING: Boston Area Rape Crisis Center, Inc.
EVENT DATE: Nov 30, 2016
(TW: mentions of sexual assault, Donald Trump)
On November 13, 2016, I'll be running the (first-ever!) Cambridge Half Marathon - my second race since I took up running last year, in an effort to recover from a few knocks to my self-esteem and challenge myself with something new. I've been very grateful to discover an activity that makes me feel my strongest, and to be able to summon the purest form of inner power every time I go running.
But I don't think I speak for just myself when I say that it's been incredibly hard to hang onto that strength these past few weeks - a symptom of being a woman during a very rough election season. Despite the fact that we're making history with our first female Presidential candidate, I've never felt more powerless and unsafe as a woman thanks to Donald Trump's poisonous words and disgusting actions. This is a man who has not only bragged about committing sexual assault, but who truly believes that he can do whatever he wants to women due to his celebrity status. (I won't give his words any more space than they've already had - y'all know exactly what choice phrases I'm referring to.) It's not locker-room talk, it's not normal, and it's not okay.
So, in the spirit of #PussyGrabsBack and in the spirit of reclaiming one's inner strength, I want to use this half-marathon as an opportunity to raise money for the Boston Area Rape Crisis Center (BARCC) - a Cambridge-based organization providing free services to survivors of sexual assault. These services include, but are not limited to: group and individual therapy, legal advocacy, a 24-hour hotline, and countless community awareness and prevention efforts across the Greater Boston area. I've been very grateful to see countless fundraising campaigns turning these nasty Trumpisms on their head, and donating proceeds to organizations like Planned Parenthood and RAINN - I'd love to follow in this vein by donating to a local organization, one that's committed to driving social change and to standing alongside survivors in their path to healing. (And considering that the route of the Cambridge Half Marathon goes right past Prospect Street - where BARCC is located - I don't know if it's possible to go any more local. :P)
Fighting sexual violence is a community effort, and should not solely rest on the shoulders of survivors. And especially in light of recent Trumpisms, it's become more important than ever to make clear that this is not something that our community is going to tolerate. Please join me in this fight and consider contributing to this fundraiser - any amount that you're able to contribute is greatly appreciated and WILL make a difference. To borrow the logic that a good friend/fellow runner used on their own Crowdrise fundraiser, if 100 people each donate a dollar for every mile I run - 13.1 - we'll raise $1310 for BARCC (not yet counting the personal contribution that I plan on making when the race is over).
Thank you in advance,