Make a ‘Pride Pocket’ for Sexual Assault Awareness Month
By Bea Gatchall, LCSW and In Power Program Coordinator
From the National Sexual Violence Resource Center, Sexual Assault Awareness Month (SAAM) is about both awareness and prevention of sexual assault, harassment, and abuse. At Howard Brown Health, we have a sexual harm response team, In Power. We wanted to take this month to address sexual harm in our communities and bring light to the resources we have available. Howard Brown is committed to addressing the growing concern of sexual violence against the LGBTQ community.
An element of healing from trauma that is often forgotten is the restorative power of creativity. For SAAM we decided to create an accessible project that folks can create to hold healing objects. Pride Pockets are a fun and easy to make. First, find a pair of jeans that don’t fit anymore or are worn out and cut the back pockets out. Then:
- Take stock of whatever art supplies you have in your house, like glue, scissors, markers, paints, yarn, thread, paper
- Decide on a creative design for your Pride Pocket using the materials you have and get started
- Once you’ve completed your work, find items in your home that give you comfort. These items could be anything from essential oils, grounding stones, pictures
- Place these comfort items in your Pride Pocket
You can pull this Pride Pocket out whenever you are feeling overwhelmed and need to ground yourself. With a 24-hour news cycle and seemingly endless isolation, sometimes it is difficult to refocus ourselves on how important it is that we are accessing and creating healing space to replenish our energy and hope.
Sexual assault isn’t defined by gender or sexuality but many existing programs for survivors are. Howard Brown has designed the first holistic LGBTQ-specific sexual assault response program in the nation: In Power. In Power is proud to offer unique programming that addresses the needs of LGBTQ survivors. In Power is able to offer programming to all survivors of sexual violence and intimate partner violence. We offer free STI testing and treatment, emergency contraception, gender affirming full body exams, and PEP meds. We can help our patients access evidence collection kits, police reports, emergency orders of protection, getting their locks changed, or a number of other legal protections for survivors. In Power can also support survivors in getting access to food, transportation, employment, and housing support and referrals to trauma therapy. If you are interested in any of these resources, please contact firstname.lastname@example.org
*The colors of thread I used were black and brown for the outline of the pocket. I stitched with red, orange, yellow, blue, purple, and magenta thread for the horizontal lines. Green thread was used for the two wavy lines in the center of the pocket. Pink, white, and light blue thread were used to stitch the diagonal stripes.
**The items I put in my pride pocket are a journal, essential oils, peace doll, fidget toy, and pencil that says “NOT TODAY, BITCH.”