October is “Domestic Violence Awareness” month. To bring awareness to Beckley, WVU Tech’s Counseling Services teamed up with the Women’s Resource Center for “Love Shouldn’t Hurt.”
“We really need to raise awareness with our students. It’s good for our students to have an understanding of domestic violence because it affects everyone,” said Mary Hoke, Behavioral Health Therapist at WVU Tech.
The “Love Shouldn’t Hurt” brings awareness to our community on domestic violence featuring, “Walk a Mile in her Shoes”, in which men and women wore high-heels to show support for awareness, prevention, and those who have suffered from abuse.
“Domestic violence is a really big deal in the United States today, and I feel it is right to support women who have went through domestic violence,” said Evan Pernessti, a WVU Tech student who participated in the walk.
“Love Shouldn’t Hurt” is a series of activities to get people talking about relationship violence and domestic abuse. Jessica Massey, a victim of domestic violence, came to participate and shared her story.
“Fear, humiliation… you feel excluded. You feel that no one believes what you are saying is true,” said Jessica.
After the walk, a ceremony took place with a live performance from Greg Lily, who wrote the song “#Warrior”, in honor of domestic violence victims. A candlelight vigil was held to represent the 21 adults whom lost their lives to domestic violence last year in Raleigh County. This included a candle for Belinda Cox, a West Virginia native, who lost her life last week due to domestic violence.