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YWCA Northeast Kansas Hosts Concealed Revealed Art Auction During Sexual Assault Awareness Month



TOPEKA, Kan. – YWCA Northeast Kansas Center for Safety and Empowerment is proud to be hosting their 17th annual Concealed Revealed Art Auction on Saturday, April 17th virtually from 6 to 7 p.m. from the historic Jayhawk Theatre. The virtual event is free and open to the public, but registration is required at Silent auction items are already available to bid on leading up to the event, while live auction art will be up for bid during the livestream at 6 p.m.

This year’s event will recognize two YWCA Center for Safety and Empowerment volunteers for their outstanding contributions to survivor advocacy: Patti Mellard, 2021 YWCA Center for Safety and Empowerment Volunteer Award; and Erin Snethen, 2021 Advocacy through Art Award.

Concealed Revealed was conceived by a group of Washburn University students in 2004 as a way to involve the art community in the effort to stop violence against women. The name of the event, Concealed Revealed, was chosen by the students because their art was “revealing” violence that is often “concealed” in our society. The event has raised over $100,000 dollars in the last 15 years and has helped fund several projects, including a remodel of Topeka’s only domestic violence shelter.

The auction features donated works by established and emerging local artists, including jewelry-makers, sculptors, painters and photographers. Over 65 pieces of artwork have been donated to this year’s auction, making Concealed Revealed one of Topeka’s premier art events. Art pieces created by survivors of violence, who want to share messages about their strength and healing, as a way to inspire others, are also featured. Artwork up for auction will be on display for public viewing at the Jayhawk Theatre on Thursday, April 15th from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m., and Friday, April 16th from 4 p.m. to 7 p.m.

“Not only is Concealed Revealed the largest fundraiser for the YWCA Center for Safety and Empowerment allowing us to raise critical funds for continued programming, it is also an empowering event that allows us to bring awareness to the impact of sexual assault and gender-based violence to the community”, Becca Spielman, program director for YWCA’s Center for Safety and Empowerment, stated.

Spielman elaborated, “While the last year was full of challenges for survivor services, we knew that the need for shelter, safety, and counseling throughout the pandemic would remain an urgent and crucial need in our community.”

YWCA Northeast Kansas rose to the challenge in 2020 and provided direct services to 1,420 clients, and crisis hotline services to an additional 1,967 individual clients. We provided adapted safe shelter with the addition of 10 apartment units for survivors of domestic violence, sexual assault, stalking and human trafficking.

“It is our hope that folks across Northeast Kansas will take time this Sexual Assault Awareness Month to show their support for survivors by attending this event and donating to ensure we can continue to deliver crucial services”, Spielman added.