PORTERVILLE, Calif. (KFSN) -- It's estimated that four out of five Native women experience some form of violence in their lifetime.
A solemn ceremony at the Eagle Feather Trading Post in Porterville on Friday is sparking a conversation Tule River Tribe members say should be more common.
The gathering was in honor of the National Day of Awareness for Missing and Murdered Indigenous Women and Girls.
Native women face murder rates more than 10 times the national average.
" We are doing something. We are not silent, like the hand. We are letting it out and sharing it so people can come out because a lot of people are holding all of that in," said Susie Moore, a member of the Tule River Tribe.
Moore shared many stories, including one of her own...her daughter-in-law was only 26 years old when she was killed.
Moore raised her two granddaughters and says it's important to be vocal and help make a change for future generations.
She says slowly people are sharing their stories across the nation.
"There is someone, a neighbor, friend who needs comfort and prayer," Moore said.
Zona Franco also shared her story.
"I have been through domestic violence and dating violence, and I am thankful that I am a survivor and was strong enough to pull myself back up and to get that strength that I needed to go on with my life and to help others," said Franco.
Franco and Moore encourage women in a tough place to seek resources and speak up before it's too late.
"It's real. It touches families. It could be you or me. It could be anyone of us that can end up missing or murdered on any given day," explained Franco.
The Tule River Tribe is working to raise $10,000 for the Native Hope Organization, which helps those who need a place to turn.
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