Take Back the Night features candlelit march

Sheets on clotheslines from Take Back the Night 2019, which took place across from the Maxwell. (photo by Sabrina Nacci)

By Sabrina Nacci |

Augusta University hosted the 23rd annual Take Back the Night on April 30 from 6-8 p.m. near the Maxwell Performing Arts Theatre.

The event was held on the lawn across from the theatre, and it was surrounded by T-shirts on clotheslines that were designed with drawings, different stories from survivors and related messages. The shirts and sheets were presented on display from the current year and throughout the history of the campus.

The first hour of the event allowed members of organizations (such as Rape Crisis and Sexual Assault Services) to hand out information about their different services.

The next hour consisted of speeches from representatives of different organizations on campus and in the community, as well as survivors sharing their stories, and then the event ended on a march through a candlelit path on campus.

Organizations had representatives set up at tables where guests could collect free items, such as handouts, pens and pencils. Each organization had several people at the tables who talked to the guests as they walked around. The guests were informed of services the organizations provide, and they were also told about volunteer opportunities.

Not only did this event promote awareness of sexual harassment and assault, but it also provided people with information about available resources, if they are ever in need of them or want to volunteer or learn how to be prepared for different situations.

Because everyone had her own unique story to tell, this event helped people know they are not alone, and this can help them heal or speak up to prevent similar events from occurring again.

There also was a 5K race held. The winner of the Take Back the Day race was Andrew Kirwa of Grovetown in 16 minutes, 34.59 seconds. The women’s champion was Keturah Stewart, also of Grovetown, in 20:16.26.

The Take Back the Night event is hosted each year, with student, faculty and community participation.