Peaceful Paths in Gainesville aims to "Make a Dif-fur-ence"
A virtual walk-a-thon held by Peaceful Paths in Gainesville is raising money for survivors of domestic violence.
The organization held its virtual "Make a Dif-fur-ence Six Feet Walk" this weekend, a part of a month-long “Covid-Conscious” fundraiser.
Participants were able to walk wherever they wanted at any point from Friday, May 29th to Sunday, May 31st.
According to Peaceful Paths, many victims in domestic violence situations often won't seek shelter because they don't want to leave behind their pets.
That is why Peaceful Paths, according to Board Member Wendy Harris, is one of the few Florida shelters that allows victims to bring their pets along with them.
“That actually does make people feel a little bit better and more comfortable about leaving an abusive situation,” Harris said. “Because they can bring their pets to Peaceful Paths and we’ll allow them to be housed with their family member."
So for this walk, people were asked to bring four paws along with their two feet.
"It doesn't necessarily have to be a dog, you know," Harris clarified "They can walk an iguana if that's the pet that they have. If they want to take them on a virtual walk, we're more than happy to have them do so. You also have the option to walk alone.”
The original goal for the group’s efforts for the month of May was $5,000 but they managed to reach that goal quickly. Peaceful Paths is now hoping to hit $8,000 by the end of Sunday.
That money will go to the many services that Peaceful Paths provides such as counseling, housing, and the teaching of economic skill-sets so victims can more easily leave their abusers.
“15% of our budget comes from donations,” Harris explained. “So we would not be able to offer what we do if it wasn’t for the community.”
If you would like to learn more about Peaceful Paths or make a donation,
to visit their website.