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SAPR bowling event aims to ‘strike out’ sexual assault

Ann McCarty, North County Rape Crisis and Child Protection Center executive director, rolls a bowling ball down the lane during a bowling event, April 21, 2017, Vandenberg Air Force Base, Calif. The event, hosted by the Sexual Assault Prevention and Response office, was designed to increase awareness and support during Sexual Assault Awareness and Prevention Month, which is nationally recognized in April. (U.S. Air Force photo by Senior Airman Robert J. Volio/Released)

Ann McCarty, North County Rape Crisis and Child Protection Center executive director, rolls a bowling ball down the lane during a bowling event, April 21, 2017, Vandenberg Air Force Base, Calif. The event, hosted by the Sexual Assault Prevention and Response office, was designed to increase awareness and support during Sexual Assault Awareness and Prevention Month, which is nationally recognized in April. (U.S. Air Force photo by Senior Airman Robert J. Volio/Released)

VANDENBERG AIR FORCE BASE, Calif. --

The Sexual Assault Prevention and Response office recently hosted a bowling event, here, April 21.

The event was designed to increase awareness and support during Sexual Assault Awareness and Prevention Month, which is nationally recognized in April.

“The month is an opportunity to highlight robust efforts to care for victims and the innovative ways we are working to infuse prevention practices into our daily mission,” said Emily Dreiling, 30th Space Wing Sexual Assault Response Coordinator. “Each of us has a role in ensuring the men and women around us can live and work free of threats from sexual violence.”

Teams of four competed against each other throughout the day while learning more about Vandenberg’s SARC and victim advocates.

“We had an information table hosted by two victim advocates here on base,” said Master Sgt. Lashandra Denson, 30th Civil Engineer Squadron engineering flight superintendent. “Attendees were able to find out what we have to offer as victim advocates on Vandenberg. The event was a chance for everybody to come out and see who the victim advocates and SARC representatives are.”

Although an individual may not be targeted by sexual assault, preventing it from happening to others should remain a priority.

“Don’t be a passive bystander,” said Dreiling. “Understanding how to recognize opportunities for intervention is vital to stopping unsafe behavior, to include sexual assault, any form of retaliation, and sexual harassment. Just because you may not be the impacted individual does not negate your responsibility to protect those who are being targeted.”

Team V members also have multiple options when it comes to volunteering.

“You can volunteer to be a victim advocate or even volunteer downtown at the North Rape Crisis Center,” said Denson. “There are a lot of avenues you can take to stand up to sexual assault.”

No matter how big or small the contribution, every ounce of participation helps in the fight against sexual assault.

“Every little bit counts,” said Denson. “Anything that you do to help support sexual assault prevention is important to someone.”