OCO News

SAF Brings ‘In Her Shoes’ to Zonta

Violence against women is one of the most persistent violations of human rights. With that in mind, Oswego County Opportunities (OCO) Services to Aid Families program (SAF) is participating the worldwide 16 Days of Activism, a campaign that calls for action against domestic violence.

As part of the 16 Days of Activism, and to raise awareness of domestic violence in Oswego County, SAF brought its “In Her Shoes” program to the Zonta Club of Oswego.

“In Her Shoes is an interactive exercise in which participants gain a clear perspective of the challenges facing women that are experiencing violence,” said SAF Coordinator of OCO Victim Services Stacie France. “In Her Shoes creates not only awareness but also empathy. We demonstrate that all women can become victims of violence; share real stories of survivors; and encourage participants to think about what they can do to help prevent violence against women.”

“In Her Shoes was a very thought provoking presentation,” said Zonta member Christina Seado Vasquez. “It was a real eye opener to learn what an arduous task it can be for women experiencing domestic violence to access the support they need.

Zonta has always had a strong relationship with SAF. The work that SAF does complements our vision of a world in which women’s rights are recognized as human rights and that every woman is able to achieve her full potential. In such a world, no woman lives in fear of violence. The efforts of SAF can help our vision become a reality.” Zonta has supported SAF’s efforts in many ways. One of the most notable is the annual Witches Ball. A community event, the Witches Ball serves as a fundraiser for SAF.

“It was wonderful to have the Witches Ball return to an exciting in-person event,” said Seado Vasquez. “Thanks to the support we received from those that attended the Witches Ball, and our many sponsors that made the event possible, we raised $5,000 to benefit the SAF program.”

“We are thankful for the support we receive from the Zonta,” said France. “The donations we receive from Zonta help us meet needs that other funding sources cannot and have a positive impact on the safety and wellbeing of individuals and families that SAF serves.  The willingness of its members to participate in our In Her Shoes activity and the amazing effort they put forth to continue the tradition of the Witches Ball is inspiring.”

OCO’s SAF program is the sole domestic violence and rape crisis provider for Oswego County. If you, or someone you know, is a victim or survivor of domestic violence, dating violence, sexual violence, stalking, elder abuse, or trafficking, please call the Crisis Hotline at (315) 342-1600. The hotline is available 24 hours a day and is free and confidential.

Pictured here, seated from left, are Zonta Members Tammy Thompson and Christina Seado Vasquez, Coordinator of OCO Victim Services Stacie France, and Zonta member Iraina Gerchman. Standing from left are Zonta members Jackie Wallace and Shannon Sofsky, Danielle Gillett of SAF, and Zonta member Sonia Robinson.


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