Safe space club: Women get the conversation started on personal issues

CampusConnection-01

By: Jessica Ricks, Staff Writer

Red Tent is a discussion group on campus based on The Red Tent Foundation where women can come together in a safe space to talk about issues they face in their daily lives.

“It addresses issues we face that no one really talks about,” junior and president of Red Tent Kathleen McAdam said. “There really isn’t another group like this on campus. There’s nowhere else to find the support we offer.”

Red Tent’s mission is to empower women.

It is a national organization, currently on five campuses throughout the nation, and Towson is the only one in Maryland.

Patricia and Sarah Rose Attman cofounded the Baltimore-based organization.

They are trying to spread the group to as many campuses as they can.

“I think it’s important to have a group like that, especially if it’s just for girls,” sophomore health science major, Alex Jensen, said. “If it’s not coed then girls can feel more comfortable.”

Red Tent talks about various topics such as body image, relationships, roommates and academics.

The group covers certain topics where they have a psychologist present to write out a list of about eight to ten questions that people go around the room to answer in a flowing conversation.

Red Tent is currently a small group of about six to 12 regular members, and in the future McAdam plans to hold events to get more people involved.

“I’d love to have more people show up to every meeting,” McAdam said. “We’re going to have some event in spring. Some other colleges have done yoga things or workshops and they’ve brought in speakers, so I’m hoping to do that as well to get more people involved.”

Red Tent gives women opportunities to build friendships, to find resources they might have not known were available and to talk about issues they face in a comfortable setting.

For McAdam, the most rewarding part of this whole experience is seeing how the club makes people feel.

“The conversations we have after the meeting is over about how they’re so excited to be there, no one has ever done anything like this before,” she said. “They’ve never been able to talk so openly about these issues. I think that’s really important.”

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