Crucial exhibit in the city

From left, Rita Fenton, artist Michelle Derosier, Jenna Johns, Cynthia Edwards and Jolene Banning were on hand at Paterson Park on Wednesday morning to launch the Basigwii local art exhibit as part of the Sexual Assault, The Road Show.

A traveling community art exhibit is underway at Paterson Park this month bringing awareness and healing for those who are traumatized by sexual assault.

The exhibit called Basigwii, which means he/she is standing up, is part of the Sexual Assault, The Road Show exhibit that collects art work from the communities it visits.

Jolene Banning, who has hosted the exhibit and spoke with participants, said she found that this is a safe place for people to gather, to feel accepted, share their story or hear someone else’s story, and to have no judgment.

“Maybe this is the first time that they realized that they are not alone and that this mountain of shame that they have been carrying on their back from this traumatic event is possibly not their shame to carry,” said Banning. “You are not alone . . . this has happened to multiple women and men and children.”

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