Missouri Western’s Student Government Association is urging students to donate items for victim care kits in conjunction with April’s Sexual Assault Awareness Month.
The YWCA reached out to SGA to help them create a month-long drive with the goal to collect items for personal care kits as an effort to make the women more comfortable in their situation. Women who suffer from the traumatic experience of sexual assault often times are sent to the YWCA without any clothing or hygiene items because their personal items are collected as evidence for the case, and as a result, the women are left with nothing.
“Nothing will ever truly fix or rectify what just happened to them, but we can help try and give them comfort and normalcy in the midst of this,” Director of Public Relations of the Student Government Association Gillian Evans said.
The SGA will be collecting donations until April 28 from 8:00-4:30 a.m. in the SGA office in Blum. Students are urged to donate toiletries or spread the word about the drive. The smallest donation can multiply into more once the word gets out. The care kits are a way to show the victims that there are people in the community who want to help and that they are not alone in the fight.
“We can help them feel human and cared about,” Evans said. “That’s my true goal – to show them that someone out there does truly care about them.”
Students can bring toiletries such as shampoo, deodorant, makeup or anything that will be beneficial to a woman in need. These women have been through a stressful and traumatic time, and the smallest gift such as a care kit could make a lot of difference.
“This is important to me, because I feel it’s our duty as human beings to help take care of those who are struggling in some way,” Evans said. “The Golden Rule is ‘do unto others as you would want done unto you,’ and I’ve tried to live my life by this.”
Donations have already been collected at the SGA office, many of which are from the office’s very own Administrative Assistant, Jessica Frogge. Frogge obtained many items through her hobby of extreme couponing and donated everything she collected to the cause. She hopes that more students and faculty are motivated to donate more items for the victims.
“This wasn’t a problem at all. I’m just happy to help out in any way I can for the cause,” Frogge said.
Sexual Assault Awareness month also brings more events on campus for students to look out for. The “It’s On Us” event is taking place on campus this week, which will include a photo booth for students to take pictures and write down a saying regarding sexual assault. Look for the booth in Blum Student Union.
SGA President Alec Guy is a big supporter of the event.
“It’s on us to stop it,” Guy said. “It brings some awareness to sexual assault. It’s a refresher that this is something that happens on a college campus.”
From the drive to collect items for victims of sexual assault to spreading awareness of the struggles victims endure from violence and what preventative measures students can take, Sexual Assault Awareness Month brings the brutal truth of hardships others encounter in life while also advocating to prevent such traumatic experiences from happening.
“It’s a good opportunity for students to know about this topic and consider the implications it can have nationally, and for the victims of sexual assault,” Guy said.