People Against Rape march in Charleston to raise awareness

VIDEO: People Against Rape march in Charleston to raise awareness

CHARLESTON, SC (WCSC) - Statistics show every two minutes, someone is sexually assaulted in the United States. That's why on Thursday night, the organization People Against Rape made their voices heard, and honored victims who've suffered sexual assault first hand.

Organizers of the event were thrilled with how many people came to show support.

Over 100 people marched. Among them were victims, volunteers, and even Greek organizations from the College of Charleston. The goal was to stop the silence and raise awareness about rape and sexual assault. 

"I'm hoping that this march will kind of take away some of that awkwardness and let people get more comfortable with talking about it," said George Jilich, a resident on James Island.

That's why these people walked a mile today around the College of Charleston.

"Because it is becoming a prevalent issue on this college campus and any other one in the United States," said Tate Moore, a student at the College of Charleston. 

Tate Moore marches for her friend who was sexually assaulted.

"It is definitely a hard thing to deal with. You can see the emotional impact it has on people and it's something that we don't want anyone to go through ever again," said Moore. 

"Building awareness is the first step to prevention. The more people know about it, the more people can prevent it from happening," said Janie Lauve, Executive Director at People Against Rape. "We were struggling and it was very, very tough for a short time," said Lauve. 

The non-profit organization almost went under in 2012 after an audit uncovered at least $60,000 were missing. A bookkeeper was blamed for the loss, but the money was gone forever. The organization laid off 13 employees and had to move out of their North Charleston offices.

"But we are back. We have a new staff," said Lauve. 

Lauve is thrilled to see the organization back on its feet so her staff can continue to help people affected by sexual assault.

"Sexual violence will not be tolerated in this community," said Lauve. 

After the march, there was a brief candle light vigil followed by moment of silence for victims of rape and sexual assault. People Against Rape will hold another community event to raise awareness about sexual assault. It will be April 26 at Marion Square.

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