Valentine’s Day is not just a sappy Hallmark holiday! Thanks to Eve Ensler and the V-Day movement, it’s become a day to show love and support for a greater cause… an end to violence against women. One in every three women on the planet will be raped or beaten in her lifetime. That’s ONE BILLION mothers, daughters, sisters, partners, and friends violated.
Last year V-Day created the initiative One Billion Rising, an awareness campaign that called on women and men everywhere to RISE, RELEASE, and DANCE. For its second year, the organization is taking it one step further… calling on us to also demand JUSTICE.
As explained on the movement’s website, “JUSTICE is about envisioning justice for all survivors of gender violence.Justice can take many forms. It can be an apology, taking legal action, exposing the truth, prosecuting, or pushing for change. It’s about bringing this global discussion to the forefront; it’s a call to restore dignity and respect for all women.”
When the initiative for One Billion Rising was announced last year, there were a lot of naysayers, claiming that the goal of gathering 1 billion people would be an impossible feat. Well, not only did they get one billion people to rise, they got it on film! In addition to this year’s planned events, One Billion rising debuted a new short film at the Sundance Film Festival called “Rising” by South African filmmaker Tony Stroebel.
The film, which received rave reviews, is a documentation of last year’s events through the eyes of professional and amateur filmmakers from over 207 countries. “It’s a document of the biggest mass action in the history of the world to end violence against women,” said Eve Ensler at the film’s premiere. “Seeing that global solidarity is possible; seeing it through the arts and through dancing; seeing the amazing creativity of all the costumes and the performances – it’s just so inspiring to see what we can do when we join together as a world.”