It is crazy to think in a couple of weeks we will be heading home for the summer, or some of you will be leaving us and graduating. Overall we have all had a great year, I wanted to take this time to review and reflect on all of the amazing things we have done this year at SHARPP. It is you, the students and UNH community who have made it so successful. We owe you a huge THANK YOU for your constant support and participation throughout our campaigns and events. So now lets take a look at all we did!
1. 1Blue String Campaign
One of my personal favorite campaigns we do is 1Blue String. We attend ” The Grind” hosted by the Campus Activities Board. It is a time where students perform, this can be singing, comedy, and poetry etc. We attend this event to raise awareness, we ask guitarists to replace one of their 6 guitar strings with a blue string to represent the 1 in 6 men who have survived childhood sexual abuse. ” The Grind” is monthly and always has a good attendance. The goal of this campaign is to build a community of encouragement for men, their families and loved ones. Having been to this event the interest is always amazing. Guitarists are always up for taking a string and by doing this, they start to raise awareness and discussion on the topic. This April 1 Blue String has expanded to the Freedom Cafe’s open mic night Wednesday nights.
2. October Relationship Abuse Awareness Month
October is recognized as Relationship Abuse Awareness Month. Here at UNH and SHARPP we had an Instagram campaign. We asked students to hold up a sign with one word describing a healthy relationship. A picture was posted each day, and it made me very happy to see what students had to say about a healthy relationship. This was such a great way t spread the word and educate each other on what a healthy relationship is.
3. The Clothesline Project
We participate in this national awareness initiative called the Clothesline Project. Survivors and friends are encouraged to design T shirts in whatever way they choose. Some survivors share their story on their shirts, some use symbols of healing, and some provide hope and encouragement for other survivors. This campaign is a great way for voices to be heard, and we have enjoyed being part of it here at UNH and SHARPP.
4. The Vagina Monologues
This is another one of my favorite events we put on at SHARPP. This is a student production of Eve Ensler’s play where she interviewed more than 200 women. If you attended you know this show had you laughing, smiling, and crying. This year we had two amazing directors and an amazing cast.Their hard work made it such a success. If you missed out on this years show, you do not want to miss it next year!
5. MUB Wall Display
During Spring Break we put up our annual display on the MUB wall. This year we asked the UNH community this question:
“Chances are, there is someone in your life that has been affected by some form of sexual abuse or assault, if you could write them a note, what would you say?”
The participation was outstanding and the notes were extremely empowering for survivors of sexual violence. This display showed that here at UNH we stand with survivors!
You can view what people wrote here!
6. The White Ribbon Campaign
During the Month of April, Sexual Assault Awareness month, The White Ribbon Campaign works towards inspiring men to be “part of the solution” of helping end violence against women on campus and in their lives. This year we had the UNH White Ribbon ambassador campaign. This allowed men on campus to be highlighted for their work on campus to end violence against women on campus. All of the men selected have been actively “part of the solution” and we thank them for their work and activism!
7. Anti-Violence Walk and Rally
This year we had over 500 students, faculty, and members of the UNH community step out to speak out against violence! Our annual walk and rally was a success this year. With over 60 sponsors and many allies and activists who joined together to raise awareness during Sexual Assault Awareness Month. It is always amazing to see the number of people walking, and supporting this cause with us. It shows that UNH takes the steps forward to end the rates of sexual violence on campus. Join us next year, the walk takes place the second Thursday of April from 12:30-2 on the Great Lawn!
All of these campaigns and events would not have been possible without our outstanding Community Educators and Advocates at SHARPP. We thank you all for your hard work this year and look forward to you coming back in the fall!
This fall UNH will be celebrating its 150th year. Here at SHARPP we look forward to joining the celebration and reflecting on the work we have done throughout all the years as well. I know I personally feel lucky to be part of the UNH and SHARPP community and look forward to honoring the 150th year!
Lastly, I hope everyone has an amazing summer and seniors I wish you nothing but success and happiness after graduation!