A part of SlutWalkJHB was a drive to collect rape survivor kits, or “helping hand-bags”. I was determined to make one up to donate on the day. I considered making one up for a child, but when I started thinking about what to include in a kit like that it made me so sad that I just couldn’t go through with it, so I made mine for an adult woman. I thought long and hard over what kind of hand-bag to buy, because like Jenty, I wondered if a rape victim would want to keep anything she was given in that situation… I eventually bought a larger version of a small green hand-bag I own. Green is supposed to be a calming, neutral colour so I was happy with my choice.
Like Jenty, I also put in a scarf as a gift, in a small gift box. It was a colourful silk scarf with a paisley design, and I love paisley.
I included a card and I wrote a message inside it. It took me ages to come up with something because I didn’t want it to sound like empty platitudes… I suppose it will sound like that anyway.
I put in a face cloth- the colour of which I couldn’t decide on and eventually settled for a soft orange one.
I put in waterless hand sanitizer, and “wet wipes” for grown ups- and I actually battled to find something that wasn’t a make-up remover or covered in pictures of babies.
I put in a body lotion and a bar of moisturising soap.
I put in a shower gel and a bottle of bubble bath.
I put in a package of soft sanitary towels.
And I put in a pair of knickers- black, comfortable boy shorts like I like to wear. They’re not hipsters and I bought them in my size.
I wanted to put more things in but I ran out of room.
I pray that whoever receives the bag I made up will know it was done with thought and care, and that I truly mean what I wrote in the card.
And you don’t have to wait for a SlutWalk to donate a bag like this one, there’s an email address in the list above where you can get more details of where to take one should you want to donate too.