There will be plenty of blog posts about hearts and flowers this week. As people all over the globe celebrate this very commercial day of spreading love … and I’m all for the sentiment behind it … I’m asking you to take some time to put thought and effort into another kind of expression of love for February 14th.
The V-Day 2013 call to action this year is “ONE BILLION RISING“. Exciting and energizing, by participating in One Billion Rising, you’re showing the world that violence against women and girls is the central issue of our time and will no longer be tolerated. Your involvement will help send the message that this movement is an unstoppable global force.
Here’s the scoop.
Today, on the planet, a billion women – one of every three women – will be raped or beaten in her lifetime. That’s ONE BILLION mothers, daughters, sisters, partners, and friends violated. V-Day REFUSES to stand by as more than a billion women experience violence.
On February 14th, 2013, V-Day’s 15th Anniversary, we are inviting one billion women and those who love them to walk out, DANCE, RISE UP, AND DEMAND an end to this violence. One Billion Rising is a promise that we will rise up with women and men worldwide to say, “Enough! The violence ends now.”
HERE’S HOW YOU CAN START A RISING – Stage a rising in your community, office, college, or school. Organize a flash mob at a landmark building/site, in the streets or in a nearby mall. Have a dance party, produce a theatrical event, march in your streets, protest, strike, dance and above all RISE! GET STARTED. Or just rise up and dance by yourself or with your special valentine, it all counts!
In case you aren’t familiar with this movement, it’s time you were. We all need to be involved. I’m copying text here from my message last Valentine’s Day. Click here to go back and read the entire post. You will be glad you did! Want to enjoy some tunes while you read? Click on the Music To Rise To link.
WHAT IS V-DAY? A global movement to stop violence against women and girls by raising funds and increasing awareness, V-Day has its roots in Valentine’s Day, February 14, and the award-winning play The Vagina Monlogues, written by Eve Ensler. Click here for the official website.
An activist and playwright, Eve Ensler founded V-Day on February 14, 1998, when she organized a benefit performance of The Vagina Monologues in New York City’s Hammerstein Ballroom. The event sold out the 2500-seat venue and raised $250,000 for local NYC anti-violence groups. Among the 20 actors performing in the first V-Day production were Glenn Close, Susan Sarandon, Whoopi Goldberg, Lily Tomlin, Winona Ryder, Calista Flockhard, Margaret Cho, Gloria Steinem, and Eve Ensler herself.
In 1999, V-Day launched its College Campaign with 66 participating schools across North America performingThe Vagina Monologues; over 20,000 people attended V-Day events. Over in the UK, a benefit performance at London’s Old Vic Theatre featured Kate Winslet, Cate Blanchett, Isabella Rosellini, Christiane Amanpour, and Gillian Anderson.
In 2000, the College Campaign expanded to 150 colleges and universities around the globe. In 2001, a February 10th V-Day performance in New York City’s Madison Square Garden sold out 18,000 seats and raised $1 million. Also that year, the Worldwide Campaign took off; V-Day events in over 40 cities raised over $350,000 to local organizations.
By V-Day’s tenth anniversary in February 2008, thousands of benefit performances of The Vagina Monologues (including a run on Broadway) had raised over 50 million dollars for anti-violence programs around the world. Over 120 countries have staged V-Day events.
In 14 years, the V-Day movement has raised over 90 million dollars and can be found in 167 countries from Europe to Asia, Africa and the Caribbean and all of North America.
Are you familiar with V-Day? Will you be rising up and letting your voice be heard? This is not just a women’s issue so encourage your sweetheart to join you this year!
Thanks to writer/blogger Emmie Mears for introducing me to V-Day last year.
Sheri de Gromm says
Proof plus that advocacy in action works.
Absolutely, Sheri, and yet there is still such a long way to go. Reading the statistics can be daunting but the progress is evident and by continuing to raise our voices and encourage others to take a stand, we can move forward with this. Your words are wise: “Advocacy in action works.” It’s a good mantra!
renée a. schuls-jacobson says
I used to be loud about my advocacy. I was raped when I was 17, so I know all about these statistics. I think things have gotten worse with Internet “meetings,” — and the other day I heard that 1 in 10 of these meetings ends in sexual assault.
These days, I make donations to my local women’s shelter year round. Not just on Valentine’s Day. And when I was teaching we talked about these issues all the time.
But sometimes? Sometimes people use their bodies as weapons. It happens. After that, it’s about walking around every day, remembering — but still going outside. Still smiling.
These days, I teach my son about love and compassion. Because sometimes I think that it the “love revolution” we most need.
Renée, I have always admired you for being so forthright. What a powerful voice you are! As you do, everyone should make each day a V-day, treating each other with respect and rising up with our words and deeds. Onward!
Patricia Caviglia says
Reblogged this on Patricia Caviglia and commented:
This blog is worth spreading. Thanks for writing it Pat!
I’m honoured! Thanks for spreading the word!
Patricia Caviglia says
I reblogged your post. I hope you don’t mind. It’s an event that’s worth talking about and dancing to.
Happy Valentine’s Day!
Well said, Patricia. Wishing you a wonderful day. We can make a difference.
Thanks for stopping by and commenting, Brenda. Yes we can (as someone else once said, to great effect)!
What an amazing cause and and amazing day to shed light on it. Thanks for enlightening me. Happy V-Day.
Brilliant post, Patricia.This is the first time I’ve heard about V-Day. I’m heading over to the website now. Thank you so much for sharing this 😀
Great, Dianne – spread the word!
Julie Catherine says
Patricia, this is an awesome post, and an issue I’m too familiar with – kudos to you and everyone who rises up and takes a stand, who makes a difference. Every voice matters. Thank you so much for this. ~ Julie
I’m sorry you have had to deal with this but your voice will have even more meaning to the cause. Let’s make a big noise!
Great post. And much more meaningful than hearts and flowers.
Thank you for stopping by, Niamh.
Okay, I’m a doofus, I missed it, but next year, will be sharing the sisterly love.
We all need to rise up, men and women alike.
LOL – there is still time! Share the message every day and, yes, all voices need to be heard!
Terrific post and a wonderful cause. As a man, and human being, I am totally against violence against women. It amazes me how many girls and woman will be subjected to violence and rape in their lives. Thanks so much for posting this.
I came over from Susie’s party. You have a terrific blog!
Thanks so much for taking the time to comment. So good to have a man’s voice added to the mix! Susie throws the best parties, doesn’t she?