Clothesline Project Favorite 

Date: 

Apr 23 2014

Location: 

Tennessee

“Stop hitting me,” “Please help,” and “Abuse is wrong” were just a few phrases painted and scribbled onto T-shirts by victims of sexual and domestic abuse to express how it felt to go through that pain.

The shirts are part of the Clothesline Project and were on display at Lane College on Wednesday.

“The T-shirts are a way for people, particularly those who have been victimized or those who have known people who have been victims, to express what that felt like,” said Daryl Chansuthus, executive director of the Wo/Men’s Resource and Rape Assistance Program. “It’s one of the ways that we bring that experience to light. A lot of times it’s hard for people to talk about in words. It’s much easier for them to express it in art.”

From 6 to 7:30 p.m. Wednesday, those victims and their friends and family were honored during the 2014 Sexual Assault Awareness Ceremony for the Clothesline Project at Lane College.

“The purpose of the Clothesline Project is to bring awareness in the community about violence against women — both domestic and sexual violence,” Chansuthus said. “In bringing awareness, the primary goal is to bring that violence to light. So many times women and children who have been sexually abused or who have suffered from domestic violence are shamed into silence.”

The event is held to give those women and children the opportunity and strength to speak up and say, “You’re not going to shame us anymore, this happened to us, we didn’t deserve it,” Chansuthus said.

Wednesday’s event featured musical selections from Courtney Richardson and Christian Anderson as well as a dance number by the 615 House of Dance from Nashville.

Many who were at the event were victims of abuse or were people who abused their wives or children and are now going through the process of rehabilitating their lives.

The event has been held at Jackson State Community College in the past but was moved to Lane College this year.

“They wanted to do something in the East Jackson community because of the high rate of violence in the area, so they wanted to do something positive to alleviate the violence in the area,” said Fisher Smith, Lane College Wellness Program coordinator.

The event was put on by the Tennessee Correctional Services Jackson branch, WRAP and the Lane College Wellness Program.

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