FLORENCE, S.C. – Candles burned brightly Friday night illuminating the framed photographs of several victims of sexual abuse.
One of those frames carried a photograph of Arthenius Jackson, the founder and director of One Touch Transformation, a Florence organization that aims to provide solace for sexual assault victims.
She began the organization in January 2014 after she finally shared her story with her family.
“After seeking help and counseling, I needed more. … And so I branched out, and with a leap of faith, I started One Touch Transformation in hopes that it will help me continue to heal, as well as bring healing to others who are going through the same thing,” she said.
For the past three years, Jackson has organized what she calls “OTT Weekend.” The weekend generally includes events like Friday’s candlelight vigil and Saturday morning’s awareness march and subsequent educational program.
“Each year I’m hoping that it grows," she said. "I’m excited, especially this year because I have other survivors who I’ve connected with over the past three years and we’re kind of going to unite together. Just kind of have like an empowerment night.”
Friday's vigil included a musical performance and presentation by Jackson. A group will meet today at 9:45 a.m. at the Fellowship of Christians Movement, 121 Marigold Street. The group will march for sexual assault awareness down East Palmetto Street until it splits into Cheves Street, continuing on until the marchers reach McLeod Regional Medical Center. After returning, an educational program and worship service will immediately follow at the church.