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V-Day Launches Worldwide Stop Rape Contest

10/02/2000

October 2, 2000 (NEW YORK, NY) –- No woman or girl in the world is safe from rape. All women know the fear of rape, the threat of rape, and all too often the reality of rape.

The V-Day movement to end violence against women is a vision of human life in which all women and girls live free, equal, safe and with dignity. V-Day is reaching out to the world with one message: VIOLENCE AGAINST WOMEN MUST STOP. V-Day envisions and demands a world without rape.

October 2nd, 2000 V-Day launched the Stop Rape Contest, a worldwide initiative designed to produce innovative and effective strategies to stop rape. The contest is open to women and girls of all ages, and the deadline for submission of action plans is December 31, 2000. Strategies can be unconventional, outrageous, funny, improvisational, daring - through the Stop Rape Contest V-Day hopes to bring new and creative energy to the worldwide campaign to end violence against women.

The contest will be judged by a team of twelve regional coordinators - all activists around the world working to stop violence in their communities. Sixty finalists will be chosen and invited to New York to attend the V-Day Gathering to End Violence Against Women, a day-long strategy session in New York on February 10, 2001, where their strategies will be presented and discussed. At the Gathering, three winning ideas will be selected by the regional coordinators and a concrete global action plan to stop rape will be formulated. Winners will have the opportunity to see their action plans implemented in their countries, supported by grants from the V-Day Fund.

The Stop Rape Contest finalists will also attend the gala V-Day 2001 performance and rally that will take place in Madison Square Garden on the evening of February 10, 2001. The inspiration for and creator of V-Day is playwright and director Eve Ensler whose play "The Vagina Monologues" sparked and continues to fire the V-Day initiative. V-Day performances have been and are being produced in countries around the world where, through laughter and tears, many women for the first time in their lives examine and openly express their intimate hopes, fears and emotional experience, defying common cultural taboos. Past V-Day performances have included such celebrities as Glenn Close, Desiree, Calista Flockhart, Whoopi Goldberg, Alanis Morissette, Rosie Perez and Susan Sarandon.

Through the V-Day 2001 Gathering to End Violence Against Women, V-Day is bringing together a new force to support coordinated global activism to end violence toward women. The Gathering is being hosted by the V-Day International Steering Committee, which is comprised of twelve Regional Coordinators from around the world and a number of international organizations. The Steering Committee is facilitated by the international women’s rights organization Equality Now.

For more information on the Stop Rape Contest, or for entry forms, contact:
Tsinu Tesfaye, V-Day Coordinator at Equality Now, (212) 586-0906, Email: vday@equalitynow.org.