Teal ribbon 5K attempts to boost sexual assault awareness

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SOUTH PARIS — Roughly 30 people lined up to walk or run sexual violence out of the Androscoggin, Franklin and Oxford county communities at the 5th annual Teal Ribbon 5K at Ocean Breeze in South Paris on Saturday morning.

The event was organized by Sexual Assault Prevention and Response Services and sponsored by Norway Savings Bank. The course ran a loop along Main Street past Oxford Hills Comprehensive High School and back to Ocean Breeze. 

Some participants had a small sign taped to their back, telling onlookers why they were in the 5K. Others wore signs which had the name of a loved one; others had inspiring words or experiences to offer.

Sarah Dailey, an educator and advocate for SAPARS, said the organization provides free and confidential support for groups and individuals. Dailey often visits schools to educate students and bring awareness about sexual assault and prevention, and spread the word that April is sexual assault awareness month.

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“This is a volunteer event — we get a lot of student volunteers,” Dailey said. “Those of us that work here have our children help out, too.”

To add an element of competition, runners and walkers could choose to have their time recorded. Evan Burnell claimed first place with a time of 20:56, and second place went to Noah Currier with a time of 21:26.

For more information on SAPARS, sexual assault prevention and how to get involved, visit www.sapars.org.

emarquis@sunmediagroup.net

Participants in the 5th annual Teal Ribbon 5K wait at the starting line outside of Ocean Breeze in South Paris on Saturday morning.

Evan Burnell claimed first place in the Teal Ribbon 5K on Saturday in South Paris with a time of 20:56.

At the Teal Ribbon 5K on Saturday in South Paris, Noah Currier took second place with a time of 21:26.

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