The Fabulous Boot Affair was a great event with an even greater cause. Deb Foster, Director of Development for the Minnesota Coalition for Battered Women (MCBW), showed an overwhelmed sense of pride for the time and effort that the ladies of ‘Sistas that Rock the Cradle’ put into bringing greater attention to violence against women and children.
The event featured a fantastic display of cutting edge men’s and women’s shoes, a free buffet provided by The Favor Café, and all of that in addition to a spirited performance by the well-known smooth jazz star Wenso Ashby. Donations were accepted at the event, and it can proudly be reported that nearly $600 was raised, in a very short period of time, to provide financial support to MCBW.
During a brief musical intermission Deb Foster gave a convincing assessment of the widespread effects of violence against women and children, as well as the extremely successful services provided by the MCBW. According to the MCBW, in 2008 at least 22 women and 10 children lost their lives as a result of domestic violence and child abuse. One in 5 females, said Foster, experience intimate partner violence, and these women are much more prone to pregnancy, alcohol abuse, suicide, and substance abuse.
In a very poignant exclamation Foster stated, “1,381 female victims of violence sought shelter and services due to domestic violence.” After a brief pause Foster added, “and that was in one day!” Another key mention by Foster was that more and more teens are being exposed to this violence.
“The key to fixing this problem is to stop it before it starts,” said Foster. The MCBW provides the public awareness and prevention services to stop this form of violence before it starts. MCBW also provides legal assistance; training and technical assistance for domestic violence programs throughout the state; State and Federal public policy and legislative advocacy service as a statewide informational clearinghouse for local, and national, news and information via e-mail listserves, newsletters, and e-updates.
The MCBW believes in the strength of diversity, affirms the power of collaborative efforts, encourages the leadership of survivors, and believes that it is the community’s responsibility to confront perpetrators. These tenets provide understanding for how the ‘Sistas that Rock the Cradle’ and others are drawn, and welcome, to the causes of the MCBW. “These women are a tremendous class act who have taken time out to truly contribute,” said Foster in thanking the group.
Angela Tucker-Dawson, owner of The Favor Café stated, “We all know women affected by violence, and when you add the direct and indirect affect on children, it really hits home that we have to stay vigilant and continuously do something about it. ‘Sistas that Rock the Cradle’ is a sisterhood that supports strong female business leaders. We are doing so many positive things that it is our charge to include those who should be empowered along with us, but are held back by painful obstacles such as domestic violence. We are going to succeed together, and do plenty to reach back in the process,”