Story by Hannah Keisker
First-year acting major Madeline Cramer created the sexual harassment awareness event, “Healing One Hand at a Time” after she was inspired by the play she was a part of this fall.
“I was in the production “If We Were Birds” and it has a graphic rape in it,” Cramer said. “I guess that just moved me so much that I decided that I would like to take some positive action to raise awareness for sexual harassment.”
This event will take place Wednesday on Pomerantz Stage from 4-10 p.m.
Cramer said she is trying to raise conversation of sexual harassment through multiple activities.
“This is basically going to just be a night to raise awareness for the sexual harassment culture that has been developing on our campus,” Cramer said. “And it’s really just a night to raise awareness for victim blaming and slut shaming in cases of sexual assault because I think this is a conversation that needs to be had.”
Activities will include actors performing talk-back skits, vocal performances, an open-mic for stories, slam poetry and speeches and presentations by Dean of Students Sentwali Bakari and Alysa Mozak, the coordinator for sexual violence response. “I never thought that I was planner. It’s been cool. I’ve learned a lot about myself through this process as well,” Cramer said.
First-year musical theatre major Haley Ashlin agreed to perform a skit and act out scenarios that have occurred regarding sexual harassment.
Ashlin said Cramer created different scenarios that concerned events she had heard about on the Drake campus.
“I think that it’s difficult to grasp that things like this do actually happen,” Ashlin said.
“I’m not really one to go out and do stuff like that, so I never see anything necessarily happening so I don’t really expect that this is a real thing that’s occurring,” Ashlin said. “So, that was really difficult to grasp.”
Cramer said over 150 people have confirmed their attendance, but it ultimately comes down to marketing on the day of the event.
Ashlin said she expects a large turnout.
Cramer said she can see herself advocating this topic for the rest of her life.
“I didn’t really know that about myself, but I’m so passionate about this. I started pulling all this together and just started learning about how people see our culture and having conversations with people and being able to change their perspective,” Cramer said. “I think that is so important to me, and I think that’s the only way you can ever spark social change is just giving them that opportunity to see it from a different angle. That feels really good to me.”