Fresno tattoo artist uses her designs to help sexual assault survivors

FRESNO, Calif. (KFSN) -- Inside the Faithful and True studio in Downtown Fresno, tattoo artist Channelle Charest thinks of each piece she does as art.

Recently, she decided to turn her designs into a way to bring awareness to sexual assault and recovery.

"So it's really a way for tattooing to bring awareness to such an important issue. And provide funding sources to these organizations that help survivors and it felt like a really important time to take tattooing and focus on that work," said Charest.

Charest is also founder of Tatstat, an online booking platform for the industry.

She recently partnered with national organization 'Still Not Asking For It' and started the first event in Fresno.

She designed flash tattoos, with proceeds going to local non-profit Rape Counseling Services of Fresno.

"I did vintage style flash. Also some modern style flash, had a bit of a feminist undertone. Basically kind of satirical ideas of women or challenging the idea that you have to fit into a certain mold or present a certain way to be accepted and valued," Charest said.

Because of the pandemic, slots were spread out over a few weeks and quickly filled up.

People can purchase T-shirts to help.

By holding the event, Charest hopes to make the tattoo studio a safe space for all.

"I myself have experienced sexual violence as well and in the industry sometimes that's an acceptable thing. This is a big bold statement for people to say that's not acceptable," Charest said.

A strong message others in the community are standing behind too.

In total, Charest estimates she will be able to donate more than $3,500 to R.C.S.

The first 'Still Not Asking For It' went so well, Charest plans to work with more artists and make the event bigger next year.

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