NORFOLK, Va. (WAVY) – Students gathered in the hundreds Tuesday night at Old Dominion to put together Fear2Freedom boxes. These kits are given to the victims of sexual assault and taken to places like the YWCA, a hospital and a spouse abuse shelter.
The 300 students who participated heard from Rosemary Trible – herself a victim of rape at gunpoint.
“He tore my body, and he stole my soul, and he stole my spirit,” Tribe said.
She is married to Christopher Newport University President Paul Trible and is outspoken about sexual assault on college campuses.
Trible organized the group Fear2Freedom with ‘2’ in the name because every two minutes a person is sexually assaulted in America, according to the U.S. Department of Justice’s National Crime Victimization Survey. The 225-compiled boxes include clothing for victims leaving the hospital after taking the test to gather evidence. Victims leave without their clothes to be used for evidence.
A student showed up, not to give her name, but to give her story on why she came:
“I was once raped and this is my way of giving back… It gives you something. It just gives hope to people. That is all it really does. I didn’t have this and I want to give it to someone else,” she said.
Trible held her tightly and told her: “You have made my day. If I only came here for you, then it was worth it.”
Fear2Freedom is here to let victims know they are not alone. “I think the crowd is a good indicator what the students themselves feel,” ODU President John R. Broderick. “It excites me that this is student generated, and they are the ones who did this, and that is terrific.”
After the Fear2Freedom kits were put together, students wrote personal notes to put in the box for the victim who will read it.
One student writes from Anne Frank: “Everyone has in them the news. You don’t know how good the news can be. How much you can love.What you can accomplish, and what your potential is.”
Another student wrote: “Hey, I just want you to know that you are important. I haven’t met you and probably never will, but I love you very much. Keep your head up beautiful and don’t let it get to you.”
Another ODU student penned: “Hello, beautiful. I know you are wondering why, and I can’t give you an answer, but I know God has a plan for you. You are strong, beautiful and kind. We probably will never meet, but I just want you to know that.”