Tell me about yourself.
My name is Emma Grace Barnes and I am a Park Scholar in the Class of 2024. I am originally from Charlotte, N.C., and have found a new home in Raleigh. I am majoring in neurobiology and minoring in social work. Outside of academics, I am the head of the Sponsorship Department for the Krispy Kreme Challenge, a University Ambassador, and the co-founder of Lux.
What is Lux?
Lux is a 501(c)-3 nonprofit I started with Catherine Carter, another NC State student, to support survivors of sexual violence through providing hotlines, information, and legal resources. Our hope is that our organization can be the first stop for survivors after a traumatic event happens. We’ve compiled research about established organizations that support survivors so survivors can focus on healing rather than researching.
Why did you start Lux?
Lux exists to support survivors of all types of sexual violence. We know how challenging the legal process is, on top of how debilitating personal recovery can be. The idea is that we did the research so survivors don’t have to—they have enough to handle. We know nothing can change what happened to them, but we can try to make their burden just a bit lighter.
What are your long-term goals as an organization?
Right now, our service is the resources on our website, luxresources.org. Eventually, though, we want to partner with law firms and clinics to provide free legal aid to survivors. Navigating the legal space as a survivor is complicated and expensive, so offering free aid is one of our main goals for the future.
What can individuals do to support your mission?
As we’re growing, any support helps. Following us on Instagram or Twitter (@luxresources) and signing up for our newsletter by scrolling to the bottom of our contact page are some of the best ways to support us right now. Financial support, if that’s a possibility, is incredibly helpful as well.
In everyday life, outside of explicit support, changing the conversation surrounding sexual violence is something every individual can contribute to. Sexual violence does not have any racial, religious, or gender-oriented boundaries, so the stigma around sexual violence needs to be dismantled by every single one of us. Changing the conversation can be something as simple as listening to a survivor when they tell you their story, educating yourself on current events surrounding sexual violence, or standing up to someone who makes an inappropriate joke.
On our website, we have a quote from Chanel Miller that encompasses this idea: “Denying darkness does not bring anyone closer to the light. When you hear a story about rape, all the graphic and unsettling details, resist the instinct to turn away; instead look closer, because underneath the gore and police reports is a whole, beautiful person, looking for ways to be in the world again.”
This interview was conducted by Emma Holincheck ’24, a sophomore Park Scholar and the 2021-2022 CEI Intern for Lux. To learn more about Lux, visit luxresources.org.