On Dec. 7 in Park Tudor’s lobby, members of the Women’s Equality Advancement (WEA) club set up a table packed with cookies, brownies, cupcakes, and other baked goods for the club’s first bake sale since 2016.
Each treat sold for $1 to $5, and the junior president of WEA, Kelsey Clouse, only expected to raise around $200. By the end of the day, however, the club had raised a total of $1,000.
“I did not think [the bake sale] was going to achieve much…. To reach $1,000 was really gratifying,” Clouse said.
All proceeds were sent to the Julian Center, an organization in Indianapolis that supports victims of domestic violence, sexual assault, and other life crises in Indiana by providing food, clothing, shelter, hotline services, and other support. WEA’s donations specifically helped fund trauma counseling.
According to the Domestic Violence Network, 40% of women and 27% of men in Indiana experience domestic violence. For nearly 50 years, the Julian Center has assisted tens of thousands of victims.
“It’s okay to talk about it,” Clouse said with regards to her main goal of destigmatizing domestic abuse.
Her other goal was to bring more attention and school wide publicity to WEA, which has been promoting gender equality at Park Tudor for nine years under the leadership of Clouse and her two older sisters.
“I want to get across that WEA is not just a women’s club,” Clouse said, emphasizing that anyone is welcome to join. “We are going to try to reach an equilibrium for all.”
Likewise, Clouse wanted to stress that domestic abuse is not an issue that only affects women.
“We just want to make sure everyone feels safe,” Clouse said.
Clouse encourages student involvement with WEA by attending its meetings on white Tuesdays or participating in its school wide activities, such as its upcoming tampon drive or movie night.
To donate or learn more about the Julian Center, visit https://www.juliancenter.org.