SAN DIEGO (NNS) -- Nearly 400 participants crossed the finish line during the Naval Base San Diego (NBSD) Sexual Assault Awareness Month (SAAM) Vintage T-Shirt 5K Run/Walk at Admiral Prout Track and Field April 25.
NBSD Morale, Welfare and Recreation (MWR) and Fleet and Family Support Center (FFSC) partnered to create this event that was held on "Denim Day," which began in 1999 as a demonstration by female parliamentarians in Italy protesting the Italian Supreme Court of Appeal's decision to overturn a convicted rapist's sentence.
Throughout the month of April, NBSD FFSC has educated personnel about sexual assault prevention through resources tables, skits, marquee signs, social media postings and general military training.
"This year DoD put out the theme 'Hurts One, Affects All. Prevention of Sexual Assault is Everyone's Duty,'" said Kat Wager, NBSD FFSC Sexual Assault Response coordinator. "Then, the CNO (chief of naval operations) added to the month with a NAVADMIN encouraging a specific theme for each week of April. So, in all of our training or in all of our events we focused on statistics relating to each theme."
This was the first time NBSD MWR and FFSC have partnered for a SAAM event, and participant Electronics Technician 3rd Class Breanna West was happy FFSC and MWR created an event that brought attention to an important issue while promoting a culture of fitness.
"I think that anytime you attach a name or a cause to one of our run's, it kind of gives people something to participate in together and it helps bring up the topic more," she said.
Both MWR and FFSC leadership look forward to many more collaborative opportunities in the near future.
"It's been an amazing, fabulous and exciting month for us," added Wager. "This morning we saw a ton of people come show up and be excited about getting information; they knew about restricted reporting, they knew about the safe helpline number, they knew how to get involved."
This month NBSD personnel have worked together to aggressively publicize SAAM information and events.
"There are banners placed all around base, it is on the marquee; people on Naval Base San Diego know that it is Sexual Assault Awareness Month," said Wager.
Sexual Assault Prevention and Response is an important element of the readiness area of the 21st Century Sailor and Marine initiative which consolidates a set of objectives and policies, new and existing, to maximize Sailor and Marine personal readiness, build resiliency and hone the most combat-effective force in the history of the Navy and Marine Corps. The Department of the Navy is working to aggressively to prevent sexual assaults, to support sexual assault victims, and to hold offenders accountable.
Help raise awareness by joining the conversation on social media using #SAAM.
For more information about the prevention of sexual assault, visit http://www.sapr.navy.mil.
For more information, visit www.navy.mil, www.facebook.com/usnavy, or www.twitter.com/usnavy.
For more news from Naval Base San Diego, visit www.navy.mil/local/NBSD/.