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Sisters On The Runway: Preventing Domestic Violence

Domestic violence. When people hear these words, some cringe while others shy away. It’s not easy to talk about, but as sensitive as a subject like domestic violence can be to discuss, it’s a prevalent issue nonetheless. Student organization Sisters On The Runway was started here at Penn State for that exact reason: to raise awareness and advocate for domestic violence prevention.

Originating in 2005, Sisters On The Runway was founded by three high school students in Montclair, New Jersey. Since then, the organization has begun to spread throughout northeastern college campuses. The organization’s initiative is simple: preventing domestic violence through spreading awareness, while also raising money to help the fight against domestic violence.

Sisters On The Runway has been gaining steam ever since its inception, with branches located in Montclair, University of Massachusetts Amherst, and here at Penn State. The organization’s public relations director, sophomore Nicole Keller, says that she hopes Sisters On The Runway will continue to grow as its name and purpose both spread across campuses throughout the nation.

Beginning in summer 2014, Sisters On The Runway was started here at Penn State by sophomore Layla Taremi with the hopes of spreading awareness throughout the university community. Taremi, who hails from Cambridge, Mass., attended high school in Montclair, where the SOTR initiative originally began. As it currently stands, the organization consists of around 30 members, with six members sitting on the executive board.

Sisters On The Runway has been actively involved this year, engaging in notable fundraisers like the “Walk a Mile in Her Shoes” march. The march took place throughout fraternity row in October, where the organization then paired with brothers from Alpha Kappa Lambda, all donning heels as they walked through downtown.

This spring, Sisters On The Runway will host its first fashion show in the Penn State Business Building, with all proceeds going to the Centre County Women’s Resource Center, the primary beneficiary of Sisters Of The Runway.

“I’m really happy about Sisters On The Runway gaining traction here at Penn State because abusive relationships are much more prevalent than people think,” Keller said. “Everyone deserves happy and healthy relationships of all kinds, and it’s great to be able to advocate for that.”

The organization hopes to hold fundraisers prior to the show in an effort to spread word of its initiative, while raising more funds for the Women’s Center — all in the name of domestic violence prevention.

For more information, you can visit Sisters on the Runway’s website and contact the leaders at [email protected], and can help them raise money by donating here.

Photo: Sisters On The Runway Facebook

About the Author

David Abruzzese

David is a senior from Rochester, NY, nestled right in beautiful Western New York. He is majoring in Broadcast Journalism, and as an avid sports fan, he passionately supports the Buffalo Bills and Buffalo Sabres. He is the first Penn Stater from his family, and couldn’t be prouder to represent Penn State University. In his free time, he likes to alpine ski, and play golf. You can follow him on Twitter @abruz11, and can contact him via email at [email protected]

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