V-Day: It’s Here

At the UMKC Women’s Center, February means V-Day.  If you’re not familiar with V-Day, here’s how the V-Day website describes it:

“V-Day exists for no other reason than to stop violence against women.”     

Many people are familiar with movements such as the Race for the Cure for breast cancer awareness or Wear Red Day to bring awareness to women with heart disease; however, many students outside the realm of the Women’s Center may not be as familiar with the V-Day movement.  This movement reaches way beyond UMKC and this country, but is a global movement that attempts to not only inform people about violent acts against women around the world, but put a stop to it, too. 

V-Day started after Eve Ensler created The Vagina Monologues, which were first performed in 1998.  Ensler interviewed over 200 women of all different races, shapes, sizes, and ages.  From these interviews she created monologues that could be performed by anyone who is willing to read them.  Some of the monologues are humorous and entertaining, others are serious and heartbreaking, and others are shocking and really grab your attention. All of them are empowering and meant to draw attention to the cause to end violence against women. 

And drawing attention is exactly what the Vagina Monologues has been doing.  The first time they were produced in 1998, $250,000 was raised and the venue with 2,500 seats sold out.  Two years later, Madison Square Garden was also sold out. According to the V-Day website, last year over 4,200 productions took place around the world. Over the course of only ten years, V-Day has raised over $70 million dollars, helped millions of women world-wide (both directly and indirectly), and helped in preventing violent acts against women through the education it provides.

Since its beginning, V-Day has had a great impact on the world, fighting against issues like rape, battery, sexual slavery, incest, and female genital mutilation.  Each February, college campuses around the globe produce The Vagina Monologues with the help of students and local volunteers.  The performances at UMKC will feature many UMKC students and community volunteers.  They will be performed on February 17 & 18 at 7:30 p.m. in Pierson Auditorium.  More information about purchasing tickets and all the other V-Day events happening on campus and in the Kansas City community can be found on the UMKC V-Day website.  Or you can stop by one of our tables on February 10 at Hospital Hill or on February 15 at the University Center to learn more about V-Day and support the cause by purchasing a V-Day t-shirt or chocolate vagina. Proceeds from all activities benefit the UMKC Violence Prevention and Response Project and V-Day’s 2010 spotlight campaign.

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