V-Day is a global movement of grassroots activists dedicated to promoting creative events to generate broader attention and funds to stop violence against women and girls, including rape, battery, incest, female genital mutilation (FGM) and sex slavery; and seeks to revitalize the spirit of existing anti-violence organization. V-Day was established as a non-profit corporation on Valentine’s Day in 1998 by activist Eve Ensler and a group of women in New York City because of the response to Ensler’s play, “The Vagina Monologues.” After every performance, Ensler found women waiting to share their own stories of survival, leading her to see that the performances could be a mechanism for activating people to end violence. The 'V' in V-Day stands for Victory, Valentine and Vagina.
In addition to performances of “The Vagina Monologues” and other creative vehicles, V-Day stages large-scale benefits and produces innovative gatherings, films and campaigns to educate and change social attitudes towards violence against women. The V-Day movement is growing at a rapid pace throughout the world, in 167 countries from Europe to Asia, Africa and the Caribbean and all of North America. V-Day, a non-profit corporation, distributes funds to grassroots, national and international organizations and programs that work to stop violence against women and girls. In 2001, V-Day was named one of Worth Magazine's "100 Best Charities," in 2006 one of Marie Claire Magazine's Top Ten Charities, and in 2010 was named as one of the Top-Rated organizations on Great Nonprofits. In fourteen years, the V-Day movement has raised over $90 million.
Today, one of 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. V-Day refuses to stand by as more than a billion women experience violence.
V-Day’s long term vision is for “a world in which women and girls will be free to thrive, rather than merely survive.” Their work is grounded in the following Four Core Beliefs:
- Art has the power to transform thinking and inspire people to act
- Lasting social and cultural change is spread by ordinary people doing extraordinary things
- Local women best know what their communities need and can become unstoppable leaders
- One must look at the intersection of race, class, and gender to understand violence against women
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