Byron R. White was right, “Short of homicide, [rape] is the "ultimate violation of self."
At DVRC we see women and men who have experienced that ultimate violation… and who have survived. And what do we mean by survive? Each individual’s path to recovery, healing and trust is different. Some may try to just move on with everyday life and put the sexual assault out of their mind… only to have it creep back in weeks, months or even decades later.
Some may choose to report the crime and through the courts seek a measure of justice for themselves and the hope that their actions will prevent another rape from happening. Sometimes the road to justice itself can be difficult and traumatizing. As Freda Alder said, “Rape is the only crime in which the victim becomes the accused.”
The path from victim to survivor is as individual as the people who have trod those miles. Last year, DVRC provided counseling to 123 such survivors…123. Some came to us only after long periods of keeping the rape a secret, but found healing once they sought support. Each journey is different. If you or someone you know had been sexually assaulted, you are not alone and we can help.
DVRC’s Sole Survivor campaign is a pictorial tribute to the brave souls who have traveled that path from victim to survivor. 123 …it’s just a number, but each pair of shoes represents one person who has experienced that ultimate violation. When I look at the shoes, I cannot help but imagine the person who may have been wearing those shoes, and I begin to think about the people I know and imagine if 123 people I knew had been raped. And then I realize what a huge number 123 really is, and I want to take action: first to make sure that every victim has access to support… then to work to reduce that number.
123 is 123 too many.
If you need help or know someone who may, you can call ourhotline 24/7