CAPSEA'S "What Were You Wearing?" Exhibit

Join us this Sexual Assault Awareness Month as CAPSEA unveils our powerful “What Were You Wearing?” exhibit.

Trigger Warning: This page contains sensitive images and stories of sexual abuse.

About the exhibit

This Sexual Assault Awareness Month, CAPSEA is proud to present our “What Were You Wearing?” exhibit, designed to challenge the harmful myth that survivors of sexual assault are to blame. The exhibit features a curated selection of outfits worn by survivors at the time of their assault, accompanied by narratives that debunk this misconception and shed light on the diverse and varied circumstances of sexual violence.

Our exhibit aims to shift perceptions and raise awareness about the realities of sexual violence. Visitors are invited to engage with the exhibit, encouraging dialogue, understanding, and community support. By highlighting the diverse range of clothing worn by survivors and sharing their personal stories, we emphasize that sexual assault is never the victim’s fault, regardless of what they were wearing. This installation aligns with our commitment to supporting survivors, combating victim-blaming, and working towards a safer, more respectful world for all.

The display can be viewed in person outside 9 South Mill and also at the Cameron County Chamber of Commerce & Artisan Center.

Survivor Story

“I was raped in county jail by four inmates. I went to see a psychologist who made me feel like it was my fault.

I was sent to another facility and was sexually abused again. I was put back in the same building, but in a different cell. That night I’d made up my mind I was taking my life. It seemed like it was my only way out. It’s impossible to put into words what goes through one’s mind when becoming a victim of rape. Being made into a person of no self worth, remade into whatever the person wants you to be.”

Survivor Story

“I was 8 years old when my mother’s boyfriend started assaulting me. It happened at night when I was sleeping. He would come in and start touching me saying “it’s alright… everyone does it.”

The abuse escalated over two years and became more frequent. He was also doing this to my sister. I wanted to tell someone, but I was afraid of not being believed. He threatened me. I finally gathered the courage to talk to my dad about it.”

Survivor Story

“I was wearing my favorite pair of jeans, and a sweater. I was roofied at a bar, I woke up in the ER”

Survivor Story

“I was 10 years old, it was just me and my mom since my dad took off when I was a baby. My mom signed me up for baseball so I could have some positive role models i my life. I was an average baseball player at best. My coach spent extra time with me and told me that he was going to make me into an all star. I got to stay after practice with him. It started with some touching which I ignored. I didn’t want to tell anyone because I was getting better and better at baseball. I just wanted to be an all-start so badly. Then one night he raped me in the dugout. I never played another inning of baseball in my life.”

Survivor Story

“I was assaulted by the father of my child when I was 6 months pregnant. I said I didn’t want to have intercourse and cried silently during. He left the room to play video games when it was over.”

Survivor Story

“It was my junior year of high school. I went to the homecoming dance with someone I thought was my friend. I told him I needed some air. We went outside to his car and that’s when it happened. I never attended another school dance after that.”

Survivor Story

“I just wanted to go for a run…”

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CAPSEA SAAM Community Events

Embrace healing through art with CAPSEA! 🎨 In recognition of Sexual Assault Awareness Month, throughout the month of April, CAPSEA will be hosting various art workshops to spread hope and raise awareness!

We are hosting a series of workshops for members of various senior centers around the area! See event details below!

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If you or someone you know needs help, call our 24-hour Hotline: 

Elk County Hotline: 814-772-1227

Cameron County Hotline: 814-486-0952