AAUW Brings “SAFE” Event to Wytheville
The American Association of University Women (AAUW) Wytheville branch in partnership with Wytheville Community College (WCC) will host “Seeking Affirmative Female Empowerment,” or “SAFE,” an event aimed at discussing safety awareness for women and girls.
The “SAFE” program will be held at WCC on Tuesday, November 14, 2017, at 7 p.m. in the Snyder Auditorium, and the public is encouraged to come learn and join the discussion.
Representatives from local law enforcement including Deputy Angie Simpkins with the Wythe County Sherriff’s Office; Officer Steve Burnette, WCC Police Chief; and Dreama Walters, Fort Chiswell High School teacher and faculty advisor for the “Save The Next Girl” local chapter, will be on hand as “SAFE” explores what dangers exist and helps the audience discover some great tips and strategies for protecting themselves and their loved ones at school, in public, and in relationships.
When it comes to personal safety and being exposed to dangerous or threatening situations, “every one of us has a story,” said Sarah Asbury, AAUW Wytheville branch President. “We want to make people aware of what’s happening in our county and how to handle it.”
“Too often young women are the target of violence, even in Southwest Virginia,” said Asbury. “AAUW wants to help protect all women by providing information and skills to empower our community. We courage women of all ages, especially parents of young girls, to attend the ‘SAFE’ program.”
AAUW is an international organization of over 180,000 members, with 800 college and university partners. AAUW is the nation’s leading voice in promoting equity and education for women. The mission of AAUW promotes equity for all women and girls through advocacy, education, philanthropy, and research. There are 27 branches of AAUW in Virginia with six of those in southwestern Virginia.
The local AAUW Wytheville Branch focuses on several major issues and has provided over $7,500 for scholarships for WCC graduating women that are going on to a four-year university or college. The branch also participates in the local voter registration campaign on WCC campus.
One of their largest projects is offering a STEM Saturday each year for middle school girls from Wythe and Bland counties. Each year, 50 girls from area middle and homeschool students are invited to participate on the WCC campus. Instructors from WCC, Virginia Tech, and Radford spend the day providing instruction and fun in the sciences and technology. Students have worked on building incubators, robots, walking through virtual reality, and studying forensics.