Men from Red Deer and Central Alberta strapped on a pair of high heels and strutted their stuff for a mile long walk.
The walk, the event’s seventh annual event, is a fundrasier in support of the Women’s Outreach Society.
Darcy Ouellet, Women’s Outreach fund development manager, said they expected 300 to 400 men participating in the event.
“We walked one mile in a pair of four-inch stiletto heels,” said Ouellet. “It brings awareness to what we do with domestic violence. The Women’s Outreach Centre runs 20 different programs and services all around domestic violence, homelessness and poverty.”
The participants came from across Red Deer and included local sports teams, businesses, law enforcement, emergency responders and people who just wanted to support the Women’s Outreach Society.
Starting from the parking lot in front of the Women’s Outreach, at 4101 54th Ave., they walked south to 32nd Street and then returned.
Last year the event raised $50,000. Ouellet said he set a goal this year of raising $70,000, but did not know the final total raised on Thursday afternoon.
“We’re busy,” said Ouellet. “We had roughly over 7,000 clients last year use our various programs and services.
The Women’s Outreach is in the midst of building its Dragonfly Children’s Healing Centre in a building across the parking lot from their main office. The centre will provide a range of services and programs aimed at helping traumatized children and youth.
“We’re not here to hurt anybody and we always say do as much as you can,” said Ouellet. “But there are even some that run in it.
“The education and awareness part is important for us. People start to ask questions about what we do when we go around delivering shoes and coercing guys into putting on the shoes and they always ask what we do. We’re an agency where people don’t what we do until they need to know what we do.”
A large contingent of the Red Deer RCMP participated in the event. Supt. Ken Foster said was enthused about supporting the Women’s Shelter, even if it meant putting on high heels.
“I’m proud of our people who work with the difficult situations on a daily basis, sadly, that brings us to this fundraiser,” said Foster. “We like to do our part and help this worthwhile cause.”