A tool for women empowerment

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Tuesday, March 17, 2015


RECENT studies show that women compared to men are directly involved in all forms of violence such as rape, harassment, and the many other forms of abuses.

To shout for this global call, V-Day, a global and non-profit activist movement to stop violence against women, works untiringly on a grassroots level demanding rights for women of equal privilege and respect.

For the past 16 years, V-Day activists in 140 countries have used both art and activism to come together to a funny, entertaining, and non-violent plea to break the chain of mistreatment and cruelty against women and girls.

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V-Day activists aim at raising consciousness, educating communities, and serving female survivors of any forms of attacks and give them hopes amid violence. With this initiative, the movement have funded rape crisis and domestic violence centers, and raised over $100 million in urgently needed funds for groups which also advocate for women prosperity.

The monologues presented during the show were that of Eve Ensler, a Tony award winning playwright, performer, and activist. She authored The Vagina Monologues which won an Obie and has been published in 48 languages and performed in different countries. Ensler is the founder of V-Day, from then on V-Day has been adapted locally with the same purpose, to end violence against women and girls.

This year, local groups in the city in partnership with JCI Kagayhaan is presenting V-DAYCDO which runs two parts in a show at Inside-Out City Montecarlo building. The first part is a Memory, a Monologue, a Rant, and a Prayer from 4:30 - 6:30pm while the last part is the Vagina Monologues from 7:30 - 9:30 p.m. on March 14 and 21. Both parts are made up of monologues read by different performers, each dealing with feminine experiences such as rape, menstruation, sex, love and orgasm.

Maia Fortich-Poblete, the director of V-DAYCDO, said the show encourages women not only in Cagayan de Oro, but in the world to stand firm and never succumb to the abuses inflicted on women.

"The victims of rape or any forms of mistreatments were mostly ashamed to air their experience that's why they silently suffer, because they think no one can help them. We want to break this problem and let them (women) know that they are not to be forsaken only because of their experience," Poblete said. "Whom they (women) turn to and whom they tell about the violence they experienced if we keep silent about this?" she added.

Since it is a benefit performance, Poblete emphasized that the performers receive nothing out of the performances; hence it is just a pure volunteer work. V-DAY is open to everyone across gender spectrum as long as the participants understand the call of ending violence against women and girls.

The organizers of V-DAYCDO were gathered September last year and planned that the donations from this Pagbantog Vday initiative will directly benefit female survivors of Sendong, Yolanda and Seniang.

Published in the Sun.Star Cagayan de Oro newspaper on March 18, 2015.

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