The Jackson Free Press and the Center for Violence Prevention are proud to announce the 10th Annual JFP Chick Ball, which will celebrate a decade of preventing domestic abuse, protecting families and empowering women to lift themselves and their families up after experiencing abuse.
Past JFP Chick Ball events have resulted in the purchase of a new mini-van for client transportation, the launch of the Batterer's Intervention Program, and legal assistance for victims. Proceeds from the 2013 Chick Ball were used in addressing an emerging issue in our area-Human Trafficking, which is also known as modern-day slavery.
This year's JFP Chick Ball is honoring and supporting all the work of the Center for Violence Prevention and its efforts to save and improve lives of families in central Mississippi. "Domestic violence, sexual assault and human trafficking occurrences continue to rise in the Central Mississippi area, as we are hearing almost daily about another woman or child whose life has been negatively impacted by it," Sandy Middleton, executive director of the Center for Violence Prevention in Pearl, says. " These interpersonal crimes cross all social-economic, racial and cultural boundaries, meaning they can affect any of us or our children."
JFP Editor-in-Chief Donna Ladd conceived the event a decade as a way to give Jackson-area adults of all ages and income brackets a way to help fight the abuse epidemic, which strikes all communities. She also wanted it to be fun, creative and a celebration of female performers. "The Chick Ball has always cost $5 to get in. I purposefully designed it to welcome all who want to come. And chicks must be prominent in all performances! That, of course, means it's a very popular event for our arm candy as well; men are some of our best donors, supporters and dancers!"
A performance line-up will be released July 11, as well as a list of restaurants providing food and a full sponsor list.
The JFP Chick Ball has become a fashion fete as well, with all kinds of dress welcome—from jeans to bling. The Diva of Bling (her) and Best Arm Candy (him) take home prizes from local businesses every year.
The event's silent auction is one of a kind, as well, with hundreds of gifts, pieces of art and gift certificates from local businesses and artists donated each year. The JFP will accept auction donations through Friday, July 18, but can only guarantee inclusion in the big Chick Issue Gift Guide if received by Friday, July 11, to 125 S. Congress St., Suite 1324, during normal business hours.
"One of the best parts of the Chick Ball is watching people of all ages step up to donate money, time or auction gifts in the months leading up to the JFP Chick Ball. You never know what's going to walk through the door!" Ladd says. This year, the items so far include a guitar, artwork by HC Porter and a barbecue grill.
At the event on July 19 at the Mississippi Arts Center, the JFP Chick Ball organizers will present its Hero Award to three people who symbolize this year's theme: Prevent, protect, empower. The heroes, and this year's Chicks We Love, will be revealed in the JFP Chick Issue, publishing July 16, which will also include the silent-auction guide. This year's anniversary event will honor all past Chicks We Love, selected each year by Middleton working with the JFP staff. Past chicks are listed on the event's website, jfpchickball.com.
Proceeds from the JFP Çhick Ball stay in the community and lead to tangible results. Middleton has watched the event grow into a key force in combating domestic abuse and sex trafficking in central Mississippi and considers the Chick Ball vital to the Center's work. "In honor of 10 years of community support for the Chick Ball, proceeds from the 2014 event will go to boost each and every program offered by the Center from prevention, to protection and ultimately, empowerment," Middleton says. "It is our privilege to stand beside these ladies and their children as they weave their way through the recovery process to become survivors.”
For the first time, the JFP Chick Ball will be held in the Arts Center of Mississippi at 201 E. Pascagoula St. in downtown Jackson. Watch jfpchickball.com for performance updates and more.
Tickets are $5; attendees must be 18 or older. Tickets for door prizes donated by local merchants are $5 each.
The Center for Violence Prevention offers services and support for families in a interpersonal violence situations, including domestic violence, sexual assault, and human trafficking in the Jackson metro area and surrounding communities. The Center has a 24-hour crisis and referral line to assist with immediate needs and trained personnel to provide wide range of references and resources, along with emergency shelter.
Media are invited to attend the event. Please RSVP to get on the media list to firstname.lastname@example.org. We encourage advance interviews about domestic abuse in the area, especially focusing on the legal challenges. Please email Donna Ladd at email@example.com to set up media coverage.