To protest rape, sexual assault and domestic abuse, close to 100 men put on high heels and walked around WKU’s campus for “Walk a Mile in Her Shoes.”

"Walk a Mile" is an international charitable event that took place on WKU’s campus today.

It has occurred annually at WKU for four years. Organized by the WKU Interfraternity Council, the charity asked men from across campus to slip into high heels in order to raise awareness about gender violence in the community.

Sturgis sophomore Clay Ahart said sexual assault and domestic violence are relevant now more than ever.

“As men we see that there is a problem with sexual assault and gender violence,” he said. “This is just one way we’re stepping out and stepping up to help prevent that here at WKU.”

Chris Hancock, a junior from Sturgis, said all proceeds go to Hope Harbor, a local non-profit crisis counseling center.

“Hope Harbor counsels people affected by sexual violence issues, and we’re excited to help,” he said.

The walking route started on Chi Omega sorority's lawn, went up the hill, around Cherry Hall and down the Avenue of Champions before ending at the Centennial Mall.

Participants hobbled, grimaced and stumbled to the finish line.

Louisville junior Donte Ellison was one of the participants who trudged up the hill wearing heels.

“It’s very, very painful,” he said. “Now when I see my girlfriend in high heels I can say, ‘I feel your pain.’”

This year’s walk raised $2,000 for Hope Harbor and a check was presented to the organization afterward.

Hancock said the event is an effective statement against gender violence.

“It shows that we are willing to stand up against these crimes and to walk a mile in high heels to show that,” he said.

For more on this story, check out Friday’s edition of the College Heights Herald.