On April 18th 2019, the Women’s Center hosted the seventh annual Take Back the Night at UMBC. The night began with an introduction by the emcees Autumn, Calista and Women’s Center staff members, Samiksha and Morgan.
Photo credit: Samiksha Manjani
After the introduction was the survivor speak-out. The speak-out is the heart and soul of Take Back the Night. Survivors are encouraged to come up and share their story with the crowd before the march throughout campus. As a survivor, sharing your story at TBTN allows you to acknowledge your experience with others who believe and support you.
We then moved on to the march portion of the night, where we got loud and chanted in support of victims of sexual violence. We Believe You, an activist group dedicated to ending sexual violence, led the march, the survivor circle of care, and a private discussion in the Women’s Center following the march.
The survivor circle is a new addition to Take Back the Night. At the peak of the march, everyone formed a circle around True Grit. Survivors were invited to the middle of the circle, while supporters chanted the refrain, “We see you. We believe you. You matter.” After the survival circle, the march back to Main Street commenced.
After the march, community members got back together for some craftivism! This part of the night is intended to provide space for reflection, creative expression, and community-building between survivors and supporters alike.
Thank you so much to everyone for a powerful and moving evening. Thank you to every survivor for sharing their story, to every ally who supported the survivors, and a special thank you to all the volunteers and We Believe You members who made TBTN possible!
If you’ve joined us this Thursday and you haven’t already, please fill out the survey by April 26, 2019.
If you weren’t able to make it, here are some resources:
- Women’s Center at UMBC
- UMBC Counseling Center
- Title IX and UMBC’s Interim Policy on Prohibited Sexual Misconduct and Other Related Misconduct