After twenty-five years, V-Day reflects on its legacy of organizing to end violence against women, girls and the planet; supporting grassroots anti-violence efforts; inspiring activists around the world to rise up as leaders in the global fight for gender equality
NEW YORK, NY — This month, V-Day, the global movement working to end violence against women, gender expansive people, girls and the planet, commemorates V25, its twenty-fifth anniversary of activism, advocacy and organizing led by survivors, artists and activists around the world. The very first V-Day benefit of founder V (formerly Eve Ensler)’s play The Vagina Monologues took place on February 14, 1998.
For 25 years, V-Day has worked at the intersection of arts and activism to shatter taboos, create space for women and the most marginalized, and initiate community-led culture and change. The driving forces behind V25 are: One Billion Rising creative resistance events happening worldwide AND two new pieces of art – VOICES and RECKONING – that help center the stories and experiences of women:
V-Day celebrates its 25th anniversary at a critical moment in the gender justice movement. With the gutting of Roe v. Wade, millions of women living in the United States are joining millions more around the world who lack access to basic reproductive health care and abortion. At the same time, women around the world are standing up for their basic human rights. Massive protests are taking place in support of women’s rights in Iran. Abortion is now decriminalized in Mexico. Indigenous women leaders in Brazil have won a historic election to Congress where they will work to uphold Indigenous rights and Brazil’s environmental governance. V-Day activists are running and being elected to political office such as Agnes Pareyio, Member of Kenyan Parliament, Rada Boric, Member of Croatian Parliament, and Lindsey Horvath, Los Angeles County Supervisor. The Rise Up Movement led by Ugandan activist Vanessa Nakate is demanding climate justice. Women around the world are utilizing grassroots organizing to make their voices heard and create change.
“We have not yet dismantled patriarchy or ended violence against all women but we have certainly made a mark, catalyzed the dialogue, disrupted the normal, brought the issue to the center, opened safe houses and the City of Joy, shattered taboos, supported women across the world in having their voices and returning to their bodies,” said V-Day founder, V (formerly Eve Ensler). “We have built a global network of indomitable solidarity, inspired thousands of high school and college students to become activists, made amazing theater and art, raised millions of dollars for local grassroots groups, and stood with our sisters in prisons, in factories, in hospitals, in restaurants and with those fighting for their lives and liberation in Afghanistan, Iran, Iraq, Palestine, and Congo. As we mark V25 with joy for the progress we have made and gratitude for every survivor, artist and activist who has been part of this struggle, we must also remember that our work is far from over. The push back is upon us. In every corner of the planet the rights of women are under siege. V-Day is here until the violence stops and all women are safe, alive and free.”
In addition to launching VOICES and RECKONING, V25 will also include major artistic works, performances, campaigns and demonstrations, including:
Over two and a half decades, V-Day has grown into a grassroots movement spanning across two hundred countries, inspiring survivors, artists, and activists to organize and build communities that upend patriarchal injustices. Raising over $120 million dollars for grassroots anti-violence groups, rape crisis centers, domestic violence shelters, and safe houses, V-Day has impacted the way activists create community and create change on a global scale.
V-Day’s artistic works, performances, campaigns and demonstrations have included:
For 25 years, V-Day has unleashed vast anti-violence work on college campuses and in communities – visionary work that has been survivor-led and focused, all the while revealing the power of art and activism to change culture and systems.
With ingenuity and determination, V-Day activists around the world are tirelessly working to end harassment, rape, battery, incest, female genital mutilation and sex slavery.
For more information, visit vday.org.