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Tech rises with one Billion in dance to end violence on women

By Jessica Wilson
On February 20, 2014

One in three women will be abused at some point in their lifetime, according to vday.org, which equals out to around 1 billion women. One Billion Rising for Justice is a campaign focused on ending that violence, and the TTU Women's Center took to South Patio on Feb. 14 to join in the world-wide movement.

TTU graduate Emily Amonett said, "We're hoping to have one billion across the world, with all these other men and women who are advocates for women and girls, to stand up and represent the 1 billion and switch it around to be something beautiful."

One Billion Rising for Justice developed out of the One Billion Rising campaign, which is connected with the 15-year-old V-Day ceremonies that were started by women's rights activist Even Ensler, according to the website. The newest mission focuses specifically on bringing justice to women who are victims of abuse. The campaign reaches out to women, men and children to find support for the abused.

Monique Wilson, One Billion Rising campaign director, said, "One Billion Rising for Justice is an invitation to break free from confinement, obligation, shame, guilt, grief, pain, humiliation, rage, and bondage. It is a call to bring on revolutionary justice."

According to onebillionrising.org, individuals from 207 countries took part in the movement in 2013 by expressing themselves through dance, art and song. Countries that participated in 2013 ranged from Haiti and Peru to Kenya and Iraq.

Alex Wilson is a sophomore at Tech who took part in the choreographed dance during this year's celebration on South Patio. She said providing an outlet for abused women to share their story is of great importance.

"It's good to get your story out there, because sometimes you don't tell your story, and it needs to be heard," Alex Wilson said. "It can affect someone, and they will notice that someone else's story needs to be heard."

Participants around the world are encouraged to come together outside of places in which women are entitled to justice, according to information on the campaign's website. This includes schools, government offices, police stations, embassies, military courts, and any other public location where women should feel safe but often times do not.

"The path to justice begins with acknowledging how violence is enabled and perpetuated - calling out where endemic patriarchy and institutionalized misogyny creates a barrier to real justice for survivors," said Monique Wilson.

Campaign officials are asking individuals who take part in any ceremonies around the globe to share their experience via social media. A compilation of photos and videos are available on their website.

For those who were unable to attend the event on Feb. 14 and would like additional information on the campaign, visit the websites at onebillionrising.org and vday.org, or contact the TTU Women's Center.


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