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V-Day Announces Winners of First V-Day 2002 U.S. College Stop Rape Contest

02/05/2002

Innovative, Winning Ideas Include "The Pink Coats" Safe Ride/Walk Program, "Satchel" Art Project To Raise Consciousness And Funds, and "Be Nice To Vaginas, You Came From One" Buttons.

Contact Susan Celia Swan (212) 445-3288, press@vday.org

February 5, 2001 -- V-Day, the global movement to stop violence against women and girls, has announced the winners of its first annual V-Day 2002 U.S. College Stop Rape Contest. Designed to produce innovative and effective strategies to stop rape worldwide, this contest is open to female and male college students. Strategies, which could be outrageous, daring, unconventional, funny, artistic or improvisational, also needed to be effective, inexpensive to implement, and non-violent. Through the Stop Rape Contest, V-Day hopes to bring new and creative energy to its worldwide movement to stop violence against women.

Among the 33 entries, three were chosen as Grand Prize winners and those ideas will now be funded by V-Day and implemented by those who submitted the ideas. The winners are:

The Pink Coats, submitted by Ashley Eberlein at Western Washington University, Bellingham, WA - an all-woman nighttime safe ride/walk for women living on and off campus. Working in pairs, the Pink Coats would be armed with a cell phone, whistle, flashlight, and map, and trained in assertiveness and self-defense, and available Wednesday-Saturday from 8PM until 4 AM for both car rides and short-distance walks.

Artwork - submitted by Mona Nicole Sfeir, California College of Arts and Crafts, Berkeley, CA - An art piece that deals with the crime of rape by creating a visual recorder and reminder of the enormous number of rape victims in our country and offering a place of empowerment and change. The piece will be made of 1,764 small stitched satchels, representing the number of women reported raped weekly in the US in 2000, and hung on 1,764 nails. Each satchel will contain a small rock, representing the cold hard pain inside each victim, and tied shut with a ribbon printed with rape statistics. Each satchel will be for sale for $1 and proceeds will go to a rape crisis center. As the large number of satchels of pain slowly diminishes, the piece becomes smaller as awareness and financial aid grow larger.

"Be Nice to Vaginas, You Came from One" Buttons, submitted by Aysha Cromeenes, Ashley Eberlein, Megan O'Brien, LaMesha Melton, CJ Moothart, Molly Riddell, Stephanie Sanchez, Jennifer Thorne, Andrea Titterness, Laura Wolf from WEAVE (Women's Empowerment And Violence Educators) at Western Washington University, Bellingham, WA - The buttons would be attached to cards that include "How to Be Nice to Vaginas" with Tips for Men on one side and Tips for Women on the other.

Honorable mention went to ideas ranging from presenting a bill to the state legislature requiring that information about rape and its devastating effects be taught in middle school health classes to placing plaques in bathrooms that define rape and warns about it to theater productions to raise awareness and tell stories.

V-Day also sponsors the International Stop Rape Contest with Equality Now, which works on a different time schedule. Winners in that contest will be announced on February 16th at V-Day 2002 at the Hammerstein Ballroom in New York

About V-Day

V-Day is a global movement that helps anti-violence organizations throughout the world continue and expand their core work on the ground, while drawing public attention to the larger fight to stop worldwide violence (including rape, battery, incest, female genital mutilation (FGM), sexual slavery) against women and girls.

V-Day is also a day (on or around Valentine's Day in February), for which annual theatrical and artistic events are produced around the world to transform consciousness, raise money, and revitalize the spirit of existing anti-violence organizations. Each year, V-Day promotes a series of innovative productions, events and initiatives that are identified collectively as V-Day and the year (i.e. V-Day 2001, V-Day 2002, V-Day 2003...).

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 just five years, V-Day has raised over $7 million and was recently named one of Worth Magazine's "100 Best Charities".

V-Day 2002 sponsors and marketing partners:

To date, V-Day's 2002 corporate sponsors include Fairmont Hotels & Resorts, Lifetime Television, Liz Claiborne, Marie Claire, and Tampax.

V-Day's 2002 marketing partners include Eziba (V-Day's exclusive retailer:http://www.eziba.com/vday), Karen Neuburger (V-Day pajamas), SUNDÃRI, and Vosges Haut-Chocolat.

The 'V' in V-Day stands for Victory, Valentine, and Vagina.