WCU kicks off Sexual Assault Awareness Week with the Clothesline Project


Students decorated and hung t-shirts to protest sexual assault and domestic violence.

Western Carolina University Students gathered on the UC lawn to decorate t-shirts protesting sexual assault in honor of Sexual Assault Awareness Week on April 6.

“The Clothesline Project is a national program that started in 1990 to address violence against women. It is a way in which women can express their emotions about domestic violence by decorating a shirt that will be displayed on a clothesline for people to see,” said Takeshia Brown, Intercultural Affairs Programming Director.

The theme of clothes on a clothesline as a form of protest was selected because when the project was started, women were typically the members of the household to do laundry. Women would congregate around the clotheslines and gossip as laundry was hung.

“It’s so important for us to spread the word about domestic violence and sexual assault around campus, because many college kids are on their own for the first time, and at the prime age for a sexual assault to occur,” said Julia Nex, a Junior at WCU and the intern for Intercultural Affairs.

“I’m making a shirt in honor of my friend who recently got out of an abusive relationship. Turning my feelings about what happened to her into something visual that everyone can see is a very powerful emotional experience,”  said Cara Thomas, a first year student.

See more images from the Clothesline Project event.

Sexual Assault Awareness Week is happening from April 6 to 10. For more information about the events, look for posters around campus or contact the Intercultural Affairs Office at (828) 227-2276. If you would like to get involved with the Clothesline Project in the future, contact Intercultural Affairs. More information about the Clothesline Project can be found at The Clothesline Project Website..