The Hope & Healing Tour
2016 marks the seventh anniversary of Lauren Book’s Walk in My Shoes journey across the state of Florida, and, with it, the launch of Lauren’s Kids’ Guide to Hope & Healing: a first-of-its-kind resource for families who are dealing with the aftermath of a child’s disclosure of sexual abuse.
The Guide to Hope & Healing was developed alongside the Florida Council Against Sexual Violence and informed by focus groups with parents and therapists from Florida’s Network of Children’s Advocacy Centers, and is designed to help parents and caregivers of children who have disclosed abuse learn to navigate the hours, days and years that follow, and support their child’s journey from victim to survivor and thriver. The Guide to Hope & Healing is a free resource for families, available online at LaurensKids.org/HopeandHealing, and in print, beginning March 2.
Walk 2016 Format:
Throughout Lauren’s statewide journey – which will, for the first time ever, traverse Florida from North to South – she and the Walk team will engage in daily and weekly survivor-based service and community education projects, followed by daily 4.2-mile awareness walks each afternoon at 4 p.m. – in honor of the 42 million survivors of child sexual abuse living in the U.S. today.
Walk in My Shoes 2016: The Hope & Healing Tour will kick off in Panama City, Florida, on March 2, and conclude in South Florida on March 26.
*Buddy Bash block party-style community education and safety fairs are also occurring in Tallahassee/Panhandle, North Florida, Melbourne/Space Coast, Ft. Meyers/Southwest Florida, and Aventura/South Florida. Suitable for all ages, especially families with children aged 5-13.
Gainesville – Education – Safer, Smarter Kids classroom visits, Lauren’s Kingdom book readings, University of Florida guest lecturing and campus events, filming for Safer, Smarter Schools professional development resources for educators.
Tampa – Survivorship and Thrivership –Alpha House offers homeless pregnant women – many of whom are survivors of child sexual abuse, rape, domestic violence and/or incest – and mothers with young children safe housing and the tools they need to become self-sufficient and effective responsible parents; Lauren’s Kids will be partnering with the Alpha House of Tampa to improve their facilities to better serve the women who walk through their doors as victims and leave as thriving survivors and capable, loving parents committed to ending the cycle of abuse
South Florida – Walking it Home – The Walk in My Shoes began seven years ago with a 25-year-old survivor walking 500 miles, from the home in which she endured six years of abuse to the steps of the Historic Capitol in Tallahassee. Since its inception in 2010, the statewide Walk in My Shoes has truly become a movement, with milestones including…
- More than 7,500 miles logged,
- Tens of thousands of walkers – including thousands of survivors – have joined Lauren on the journey,
- 3,500+ local, statewide and national media stories — including the cover of Newsweek magazine,
- Nearly two dozenlaws changed to better support survivors and protect children and families.
- The South Florida portion of the Walk in My Shoes will take the walk back to its roots – walking on highways and byways,
- hosting education sessions with partners including the Miami HEAT, sexual assault treatment centers and the University of Miami and local K-12 schools,
- and concluding just miles from that very same home the Walk began back in 2010.
About Walk in My Shoes:
Over the past six years, tens of thousands of Floridians, including thousands of survivors, have come out to walk with Lauren and show their support for her mission to end child sexual abuse and help survivors heal. Walk in My Shoes has given voice to an experience shared by 1 in 3 girls and 1 in 5 boys in the U.S. Armed with the knowledge that 95% of child sexual abuse is preventable through education and awareness, Lauren embarks on her Walk in My Shoes journey across the state of Florida to empower survivors, educate communities from the Panhandle to the Keys, and advocate for legislative change.
As much as we’ve done and as far as we’ve come, there is still more left to do in the fight for a safer Florida. Come Walk with us, toward Hope & Healing!
Stay tuned for news on our 2016 Walk in My Shoes…and be sure to sign up for our Newsletter to stay up-to-date on all Lauren’s Kids events and activities in your area!