Wednesday, January 14, 2015

19th Annual MAAV Walk and Candlelight Vigil

You know when you participate in a really special event that raises tons of money and honors nine victims to domestic violence and then three months later you realize you never blogged about it? Just me? Well anyway that happened.  I guess I was a worse blogger this fall than I realized. 

The 19th Annual MAAV Walk and Candlelight Vigil was a huge success with over 500 people in attendance.  We had 46 teams walk and raised over $39,000.  That is the most we have ever raised.  We lit candles to remember the nine victims who died since the previous year's walk and honored them with a special ceremony including a beautiful song performed by several community members.

Our community art project was to complete a "word bubble" by finishing the statement above.  It is now on display in the Melrose High School as a constant reminder to all of the students.  It was a great way to get everyone involved and is a great visual of all the things we can do to help!

We shared a little information about each of the victims including a mother and her two year old twin sons who were killed by their husband/father.  Her brother and sister-in-law actually heard about the walk and asked if they could come.  They lit the candle and it was quite the emotional moment. I only hope that they felt some peace by seeing all of the people at this event who are committed to prevention of DV.

Board of Directors, Walk Committee and Students = a great group of people who pulled off a fabulous event!  Oh and the man dressed in black on the left is our guest speaker and award recipient.  His name is Tom Santoro and he started a program called "Dear Lisa" after his 18 year old daughter was murdered by her ex-boyfriend.  He recently decided to retire and our event was his last public speaking event. 

I wore all of my MAAV bracelets to the walk so had to snap a photo b/c I thought they looked so pretty together.  We make one every year prior to the walk and sell them as a fundraiser.  They are very popular and you will see many people around Melrose wearing them year round!

To see more photos from the walk go here and don't forget to like the MAAV Facebook page to follow along with all of our great work!

It is really hard to capture the emotion of this event in a blog post (especially when you write it 3 months later) but take my word for it.  It is extremely emotional but the emotional changes to energy as everyone heads out on the walk route.  One of the best parts is seeing all of the students who participate.  It isn't easy to get kids to volunteer so it is pretty great that so many come!

The MAAV Board is now busy preparing for February which is Teen Dating Violence month.

1 comment:

  1. This is so awesome that you do stuff like this. Seriously, if we were closer, I would so go with you to these things!