To freshen up its posters and banners in time for the Take Back The Night March later this month, the Quesnel Women’s Resource Centre (QWRC) is hosting a craft night Thursday, Sept. 12 from 5-8 p.m.
Kassondra Schwab, who is a member of the QWRC’s events committee, says they will be revamping all their existing posters because their old ones are starting to fall apart, and they want to add new statistics.
They also have a button-maker, and they will be creating feminist sayings and signs.
“We’re also inviting families of those who were either lost to domestic violence or who may have just experienced domestic violence to come,” said Schwab.
“We usually start the march at the memorial, which has a number of names of women who have been lost to domestic violence, so we would like the families to come out and if they want to bring a picture of that person, they can.”
There will be tea, coffee and water available at the QWRC at 690 McLean St., and Subway is catering the craft night.
Schwa says the QWRC has four or five blank banners this year, and one of those blank banners will be at the craft night if people want to add their handprints to it or anything else, and they will be providing some banners to Correlieu Secondary School and to other agencies in the community so they can decorate them.
Schwab says they will provide all the craft supplies at the QWRC, and they will have some T-shirts that people can donate money to take home and decorate.
The posters will be kept at the women’s centre and used for this year’s march and future marches.
Schwab says craft night will also be a chance to introduce people to the women’s centre if they haven’t been there before, and people who come to the centre can find out more about the services they offer and meet those involved.
This year, Quesnel’s Take Back The Night March will take place Friday, Sept. 20, starting at 6 p.m. at the memorial on Bowron Avenue with speeches, then marching through the city, ending with refreshments at the QWRC.
Schwab says this year’s route is a bit longer than usual, and they will have a car for people who are not able to walk the entire distance.
“I feel like it’s a pretty important event for bringing awareness of sexual and domestic violence that women face,” she said. “I think that education piece is really important, and having a safe space to talk about experiences or to ask questions and to understand your role in preventing violence.”
Schwab feels the march is also a chance to bring people together and create a sense of community.
“The co-ordinating collective, they have quite a few different women from different agencies,” she noted.
“We all have a common goal, and even though we may have some different backgrounds and our work may be quite different, it’s really nice for all of us to come together and be able to share our stories and try to make the community better.”
Schwab says there are usually around 100 people or more at the Quesnel march.
“It’s actually a pretty successful event,” she said.
Schwab emphasizes that men are welcome too.
“Sometimes, people who organize Take Back The Night, they decide they only want women and children, but others will ask that men come because they also experience sexual and domestic violence, and it is also good to have allies there to lean on,” she said.