Attend NYC Event: Stop Raping Our Greatest Resource: Ending Femicide in the DRC
V-Day, the Global Movement to End Violence Against Women and Girls, and UNICEF
in collaboration with The Culture Project
Stop Raping Our Greatest Resource: Ending Femicide in the DRC with Eve Ensler and Christine Schuler Deschryver, Congolese-born human rights activist
with an introduction by Pamela Shifman, Child Protection Specialist, UNICEF
Monday, September 17, 2007
Conversation: 7:00pm - 8:30pm
The Culture Project
55 Mercer Street (at Broome Street)
THIS EVENT IS SOLD OUT, BUT WAITING LIST TICKETS MAY BE AVAILABLE ON SITE.
This evening of conversation with one of the DRC’s leading activists is the NYC launch of Stop Raping Our Greatest Resource: Power to the Women and Girls of Democratic Republic of Congo, a joint two-year campaign between V-Day and Unicef on behalf of UN Action Against Sexual Violence in Conflict. The campaign calls for an end to impunity for sexual violence, for measures to ensure that state armed forces and police do not perpetrate sexual violence against women and girls and for the full implementation of national laws that protect and empower women.
The campaign began on August 7th, coinciding with release of the September issue of Glamour Magazine, which features a new article by Eve on her first-hand encounters with women in eastern DRC. In less than a month, V-Day has received overwhelming support from women and men all over the world and in response to Eve’s article hundreds of letters have been sent to the DRC government and over $10,000 has been raised for local organizations working on the ground to end the violence.
Within DRC, partners such Panzi Hospital, Coopi and HEAL Africa as well as survivors, women leaders and local activists, will document personal histories, run educational workshops, and spread the word about sexual violence via radio, comic books, theatre, song, leaflets, and a website. Local women’s and survivors groups will be encouraged to participate and make their voices heard at all levels of government as well as the judiciary and the police.
Funds raised through the campaign will support local groups that provide counseling, medical services and legal aid on the ground. A centerpiece will be the creation of City of Joy in Bukavu – a centre for survivors who have been left without family, community or the capacity to have children. City of Joy will give them a safe place to live while providing an education, leadership training and a chance to earn income.
In December 2006, Eve Ensler hosted a conversation about sexual violence in DRC with Dr. Denis Mukwege, Managing Director and Founder of Panzi Hospital in Bakavu, DRC. Dr. Mukwege, a long-time colleague of Christine Schuler Deschryver, invited Eve to visit DRC in May. She chronicled the horrors she witnessed in Glamour magazine: http://www.vday.org/contents/vday/vmoments/070801.
Eve Ensler is an Award-winning Playwright/Performer/Activist and Founder of V-Day, a global movement that supports anti-violence organizations throughout the world.
Christine Schuler Deschryver is a Congolese-born human rights activists and the Administrative and Finance Coordinator for GTZ in Eastern DRC. In 2000, after witnessing the rape and murder of her best friend, and after an infant died in her arms, she decided to devote her life to alerting the world about the femicide and massive rapes taking place in her country of origin.
Pamela Shifman is a UNICEF Child Protection specialist focusing on sexual exploitation and gender based violence. While at UNICEF, Pamela Shifman has traveled to countries in conflict – including Democratic Republic of Congo, Sierra Leone, Liberia and Sudan -- to support UNICEF’s work on violence against women and girls. Prior to joining UNICEF, Ms. Shifman was Associate Director of Equality Now, an international women’s rights organization where she directed campaigns on trafficking in women and sex tourism
For more information on the event please email firstname.lastname@example.org
For more information on the campaign and background on the Democratic Republic of Congo please visit http://www.vday.org/contents/drcongo.
Since 1996, sexual violence against women and children in the eastern part of the DRC has been used to torture and humiliate women and girls and destroy families. UNICEF estimates that hundreds of thousands of women and girls have been raped since the conflict began in DRC. In addition to the severe psychological impact, sexual violence leaves many survivors with genital lesions, traumatic fistulae and other physical wounds, as well as unwanted pregnancies and sexually transmitted infections, including HIV.
V-Day is a global movement to end violence against women and girls that raises funds and awareness through benefit productions of Playwright/Founder Eve Ensler’s award winning play The Vagina Monologues. In 2007, more than 3000 V-Day events took place in the U.S. and around the world. To date, the V-Day movement has raised over $50 million and educated millions about the issue of violence against women and the efforts to end it, crafted international educational, media and PSA campaigns, launched the Karama program in the Middle East, reopened shelters, and funded over 5000 community-based anti-violence programs and safe houses in Kenya, South Dakota, Egypt and Iraq. V-Day will highlight the women of Democratic Republic of Congo in its 2009 Spotlight campaign, spreading the word via thousands of annual V-Day benefits and activists. Previous V-Day Spotlight campaigns have focused on Haiti, Iraq, Afghanistan, Mexico, and India. The 'V' in V-Day stands for Victory, Valentine and Vagina. Visit http://www.vday.org
UNICEF is on the ground in over 150 countries and territories to help children survive and thrive, from early childhood through adolescence. The world’s largest provider of vaccines for developing countries, UNICEF supports child health and nutrition, good water and sanitation, quality basic education for all boys and girls, and the protection of children from violence, exploitation, and AIDS. UNICEF is funded entirely by the voluntary contributions of individuals, businesses, foundations and governments. Visit http://www.unicef.org
About Stop Rape Now
UN Action Against Sexual Violence in Conflict is a new initiative that brings together 12 UN entities, working collectively to end sexual violence in conflict and to respond to the needs of survivors. UN Action seeks to work with NGO partners and national governments towards these goals. Visit http://www.StopRapeNow.org
About the Culture Project
Blending prize-winning theatre with urgent moral drama, the Culture Project brings the national political conversation to life on the New York Stage. For more than a decade, the Culture Project has told stories as timely as the morning's newspaper in a way that news articles and editorials can never match. Through brilliantly conceived, expertly staged dramas, the Culture Project sparks conversation, lifts the human heart and incites political action.