Community members and students will “Take Back the Day” on Saturday at Sexual Assault Counseling and Information Service’s annual 5K Run/Walk at Sister City Park.
Amanda Feder, the preventionist for SACIS, said the entire team has been working together to make this event possible.
“I’m really excited to see our supportive community come together for this collective event,” Feder said.
The annual run, which will be celebrating its fourth year, derives its name from the “Take Back the Night” march, which SACIS also hosts every year.
Erin Walters, the executive director of SACIS, said the march originated in the 1970s as a way for women who felt unsafe walking alone at night to make their voices heard.
“Everyone should be able to walk freely at night without the threat of violence,” Walters said, “But, it’s not just at night we should be able to walk freely.”
There is an entrance fee of $20 for those who register online, $10 for students and seniors and $25 for those who register on-site. Children six and under may enter for free.
There is also a one-mile option for those who cannot walk or run a full 5K.
SACIS also allows student organizations to become a sponsor for $50. Members of organizations sponsoring the run/walk are able to participate for free. Becoming a sponsor also allows students of that organization to purchase shirts for $5.
Walters said some of the student organizations that have already become sponsors this year include Epsilon Sigma Alpha, Chi Sigma Iota and Alpha Sigma Tau.
“The money raised goes directly to SACIS,” Walters said. “It goes to areas where we have less funding. A lot of it goes to prevention education programs that we do in the schools.”
SACIS goes to K-12 schools to help teach students with age-related materials concerning sexual assault and consent. Topics include teaching younger children to find their “safe grown-ups” and teaching older students about the dangers of the Internet, as well as the characteristics of healthy relationships.
While the amount of those involved in the run each year varies, the team at SACIS said they are expecting a good turnout to Saturday’s run.
With the weather looking to be ideal, Feder said they are hoping for the best turnout and the most enjoyable 5K run yet.
“I think people will enjoy walking through the beautiful neighborhoods in Heritage Woods,” said Walters. “Everyone I’ve spoken to has thoroughly enjoyed the routes we choose and getting to see the neighborhoods. They get to explore parts of Charleston that they don’t normally go to.”
Those interested can pre-register at www.firstgiving.com/sacis or sign up on-site as late as 7:45 a.m. the day of the run. The 5K starts at 8 a.m.
T-shirts will also be available to everyone at the event.
SACIS’s office can be reached at 217-348-5033 with any further questions about the run.
Travis Moody can be reached at 581-2812 or [email protected]