Marketing Director Joshua Jones feels more men should be involved in causes like ours. The following content is re-posted from his blog with permission.
About a year ago, I began volunteering with a group known as Still Standing. I, along with a group of other like-minded individuals, chose to give whatever time we could to promoting awareness and advocacy on behalf of women who have been victims of sexual assault. From the perspective of a male, I think it’s important for people to understand the role I play in the organization, and why I choose to devote my free time to this cause.
Growing up, I was part of a family where the women outnumbered the men about 3 to 1. I sometimes caught glimpses into the daily life of those women, and not all of it seemed to be ideal, let alone fair. Whether it was something like pay inequality or some form of abuse, I learned how biased and even dangerous the world could be for women in ways that most men, including myself, will never fully understand or have to experience.
As I grew older, I started hearing more and more stories from my female peers about how they had gone through one or several forms of abuse or faced a bias. Up until then, I had seen glimpses of these issues, but had no idea how common they really were. Over time, I began to realize that many of my male friends were virtually clueless about these injustices toward women and how that lack of knowledge allows those injustices to continue. By the time I reached college, I began incorporating human rights into who I would become as a person, and my philosophy became very simple: People deserve to be treated fairly and to be safe. This included people from all walks of life regardless of whether I shared their lifestyle or their challenges.
When I learned about Still Standing from the founder, Aeriel, we were schoolmates and acquaintances at best, but I fully believed in her mission. I jumped right in and haven’t looked back, nor have I regretted my decision. To this day, I work with Still Standing in order to help empower women who have endured abuse, and to honor my friends and family who have suffered those same hardships. In the end, I would love to see more men speak up and support causes like ours, and Still Standing provides me with a chance to lead by example.