CASA Walk Against Violence: Proyecto de los Nombres

By Trish Snyder

Each year on January 24 more than 100 men, women and young people meet in the Jardín in San Miguel to participate in CASA’s annual Walk Against Violence, which takes place concurrently with the start of the centuries old Caminata de San Juan de los Lagos, the nine-day journey made by thousands of pilgrims each year to one of the most important shrines in Mexico.

10th Annual San Miguel Walk Against Domestic Violence
Thu, Jan 24, 6am
Jardín Principal, in front of the Parroquia
US$50 per walker
Proceeds benefit CASA’s anti-violence programs
For more information:
Trish Snyder – 121-0612 (English)
Dulce Ortiz – 154-6060 (Spanish)

For 10 years, CASA participants have walked with the pilgrims for the first few miles on Day 1 to increase awareness of the problem of violence in San Miguel and to raise funds for CASA’s anti-violence education and outreach programs.

But, for a long time, Walk participants have wanted to do even more. Because the number of reported acts of violence continues to increase dramatically in so many countries, they wanted to be able to express their solidarity with those victims and to figuratively reach out to them across the barriers of time and international borders. Consequently, CASA Walk volunteers established Proyecto de los Nombres, which will allow Walk participants to reach out to victims of violence worldwide.

Proyecto de los Nombres

The purpose of the project is to encourage people—if they or anyone else they know has been a victim of violence—to submit the first name of that person to CASA psychologist Dulce Ortiz ( via email. Additionally, people have written names on small pieces of paper and given them to volunteers who have been collecting names from attendees at recent CASA events, local markets and the Jardín and from recipients of the CASA newsletter. CASA will continue collecting names until midnight on January 23. Then the papers with the names will be place in a specially marked messenger bag for the Walk participants to take turns carrying.

By carrying the names of the victims along on the Walk, the participants will symbolically bear the burden of the victims’ pain for that one day. Our hope is that this will help them realize that they are not alone and perhaps find some small measure of peace.

Later that same night, Walk participants will gather at CASA to read aloud the names before burning them, thereby symbolically reducing the victims’ pain to ashes, which will be carried away by the wind.

How can you be involved? There are three ways that you can participate and publicly say “no más” to violence and its aftermath. One, join other participants on January 24 on the CASA Walk Against Violence. Two, email the first name of a victim of violence to the Proyecto de los Nombres. Three, send a donation to help fund CASA’s violence prevention programs that improve the lives of thousands through educational workshops, free medical care, psychological counseling and legal services as well as temporary shelter; and a 24-hours-a-day, 365-days-a-year telephone hotline for victims of violence. To learn more about any of these three options, go to the CASA website at


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