When fashion makes a statement; Berkshire Pathways shows up to support fundraiser
Updated: Jul 10
Dressed to make a statement, Berkshire Pathways Program Manager David Brien stepped into a pair of red polka-dotted slingback wedge espadrilles and participated in the recent Elizabeth Freeman Center’s “Walk a Mile in Her Shoes” fundraiser.
He wasn’t alone. With his team of clubhouse staffers and members, appropriately named the “Power Pump Boys,” they were among the nearly 900 walkers who turned up for the annual event this past fall in Pittsfield, Massachusetts.
The mile-long walk raises money for the advocacy organization that works to end domestic violence and sexual abuse. This past year, roughly $90,000 was raised.
“I think the community needs to hear more about this center and what they do,” said David. “Many friends, family, and members have received help from this group and I wanted to give back a little.”
Despite the serious cause, the event encourages laughter, smiles, and fun. David and his team have participated in four walks. This past year, with the support of friends and family, David was the fifth highest fundraiser.
“I do different shoes every year and it’s generally not too bad; my calves are sore the next day,” David said with a chuckle. “This year, I wore the highest heels I have yet and it’s definitely worse than wearing smaller heels; and the shoes fell apart. That was a drag.”
Donald, a Berkshire Pathways member and Power Pump Boys teammate, donned 2-inch red heels for the occasion, said his pumps hurt a bit, but he prefers it that way.
“It wouldn’t be right if the shoes didn’t hurt,” he said. “Of course it’s not of equal comparison to their suffering.”
David said he searches for “cheap and large” heels online and wears something different each year. Once he’s received the pair in the mail, he models them for clubhouse members, but doesn’t actually walk in them until the big day.
Next year, he said he hopes to have a larger team and raise more money for the cause.