HUNDREDS EXPECTED IN HEROES SQUARE ON VALENTINE’S DAY
FOR RALLY TO END VIOLENCE AGAINST WOMEN AND GIRLS
(February 11, 2013, Bridgetown, Barbados):Hundreds of Barbadians are expected to show their love on Valentine’s Day by gathering in Heroes Square from 11:30 a.m. for One Billion Rising (OBR) Barbados, an event calling for an end to violence and sexual violation of women and girls.
The event, one of hundreds taking place around the world as part of a global movement to end the assault of women, will include speeches by representatives of leading NGOs including the SAVE Foundation, National Organisation of Women and UN Women. Performers include spoken word artiste, Adrian Greene; and singers, Rhesa Garnes, Marisa Lindsay, and Mandy Cummins.
A major feature of OBR Barbados is participation in a group dance to the One Billion Rising anthem, Break the Chain. Barbadians in Heroes Square will be led by dancers from the Louise Woodvine Dance Academy, Genesis, Dance Strides Barbados,and the Barbados Dance Theatre. “We are calling Barbadians, men and women, schools, church and community groups to stop what they normally do and gather at 11:30 a.m. on Valentine's Day in Heroes Square to dance together in solidarity against violence. We are calling them to refuse to participate in the status quo until rape and rape culture ends in Barbados,” explained Pia James, OBR Barbados Planning Committee member.
James added that the OBR Barbados event would be unprecedented. “All women's groups in Barbados including the SAVE Foundation, National Organisation of Women, YWCA, Business and Professional Women’s Club of Barbados, and UN Women are coming together for the very first time as a force to be reckoned with.”
According to a study conducted by the World Bank in 2007, violence against women seems to be endemic in Caribbean countries. This study also reported that while the worldwide average for rapes was 15 per 100,000, Caribbean countries exceeded this average.
One Billion Rising began as a call to action based on the statistic that 1 in 3 women on the planet will be beaten or raped during her lifetime. With the world population at 7 billion, this adds up to more than one billion women and girls.
The OBR Barbados Planning Committee says these statistics for both the region and the world are unacceptable. “Women have made tremendous gains over past decades and centuries. However, these achievements are overshadowed by the statistics of violence against women. It is for this reason we are joining the global One Billion Rising movement and advocating for change,” James noted.
She also extended thanks to the organisations and corporate entities which had donated time and resources to OBR Barbados including: Advantage Caribbean Institute Ltd., Bajan Fusion, Barbados Faces, Chase Midway Clothing, Clearly Content Communications Inc., Grafixx 2 Inc. and Anica’s Photo Booth.
OBR Barbados has created a Facebook pages to educate Barbadians about the local OBR initiative as well as violence against women and girls at: www.facebook.com/groups/OBRbarbados and www.facebook.com/OneBillionRisingBarbados.
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About One Billion Rising
One in three women on the planet is raped or beaten in her lifetime. That is ONE BILLION WOMEN violated. One billion daughters, mothers, grandmothers, sisters, lovers and friends. On 14th February 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 will move the earth, activating women and men to dance across every country. V-Day wants the world to see our collective strength, our numbers and our solidarity across borders. Join V-Day and ONE BILLION RISING today and SAY NO to violence against women and girls. To sign up and learn more, visit www.onebillionrising.org, and to learn about Barbados’ activities visit www.facebook.com/OneBillionRisingBarbadosand www.facebook.com/groups/OBRbarbados.
V-Day is a global activist movement to end violence against women and girls that raises funds and awareness through benefit productions of Playwright/Founder Eve Ensler's award winning play The Vagina Monologues and other artistic works. In 2012, over 5,800 V-Day benefit events took place produced by volunteer activists in the U.S. and around the world, educating millions of people about the reality of violence against women and girls. To date, the V-Day movement has raised over $90 million and educated millions about the issue of violence against women and the efforts to end it, crafted international educational, media and PSA campaigns, reopened shelters, and funded over 14,000 community-based anti-violence programs and safe houses in Democratic Republic of Congo, Haiti, Kenya, South Dakota, Egypt and Iraq. Over 300 million people have seen a V-Day benefit event in their community. V-Day has received numerous acknowledgements including Worth Magazine's 100 Best Charities, Marie Claire Magazine's Top Ten Charities, one of the Top-Rated organizations on Philanthropedia/Guidestar and Great Nonprofits. V-Day's newest campaign is ONE BILLION RISING which will culminate on 021413 with a global action worldwide. www.vday.org
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