Kappa Tau Epsilon coordinated an event that raised awareness about domestic violence and raised money for the Avon Speak Out Against Domestic Violence Foundation on Wednesday, Nov. 5, from 10 to 11:30 p.m.
“This event has been KTE’s main philanthropy for years,” KTE Philanthropy Chair Gabrielle Gittens said. “I think it’s a great way to help bring awareness to the community as well as raise money for a great foundation.”
Early in the evening, the event was bustling with people looking at gift baskets for auction.
SVSU University Police officer Ryan Persails began the event with a speech about what domestic violence is and how to recognize signs of it.
“When we think of domestic violence, we think of a man beating a woman,” Persails said. “But that’s not always the case. It can also include verbal abuse, not letting you see family, not letting you do what you want… It’ll only get worse.”
Persails then answered a few lingering questions. Some included the procedure of a domestic violence call and how many he has gotten from campus.
Next to speak was Crystal Sanders from the Underground Railroad, a Saginaw-based community organization that serves residents of Saginaw County who are victims of domestic violence, sexual assault, stalking and human trafficking. She discussed signs of domestic violence and solutions for people in that situation.
“It’s not an easy thing to talk about or listen to,” Sanders said. “One in four women and one in nine men are victims to domestic violence.”
The Underground Railroad provides support for those in domestic violence scenarios. They have safe houses in the area that provide for up to 50 people at a time for 90 days. They also have an attorney on staff at all times and sup- port groups weekly.
At the end of the night, gift baskets were given away to those who bid on them. The event raised over $500 to the Avon Domestic Violence cause.
“I think we had a great turnout,” KTE inductee Shannon Kellenberger said. “I took away that domestic violence takes place much more frequently than people realize and the best thing to do is not be afraid to speak up.”