This Sunday, Feb. 15, a production of the “Vagina
Monologues” will mark the culmination of “V-Day,”
an international campaign promoting awareness about violence
against women and girls. “V-Day,” an abbreviation for
Victory, Valentines, and Vagina Day, is an annual celebration of
the empowerment of women. The brainchild of Eve Ensler, author of
the “Vagina Monologues,” V-Day now occurs on a global
scale, across hundreds of college campuses worldwide. At the
University alone, the V-Day campaign has raised more than $50,000
for both local and national charities. It is therefore imperative
that the University community continues in its support for V-Day,
as it is the sole day when women around the world can raise
awareness about the issues that matter most to their lives.

Julie Pannuto

Here at the University, the money raised during V-Day and the
week prior to V-Day, known as “V-Week,” is donated to
the SAFE House shelter in Washtenaw County and to a shelter in
Juarez, Mexico, in memory of the hundreds of women who have been
abducted or murdered in Juarez. As the international cause this
year, and all V-Day events around the world will be donating some
of their proceeds to the Juarez community. With these funds, these
worthwhile organizations are able to provide vital services to
victims of sexual assault, domestic violence, rape and incest.

V-Day symbolizes the effect women activists have had on society
for the past few centuries. It promotes equal rights and
opportunities for women, encourages women to be educated and
successful, and to teach to younger generations the power that
women can have. On college campuses particularly, V-Day is a
campaign to empower young women so that they can be leaders and
shape their own future.

There are many ways to get involved with V-Day. Students can go
see the “Vagina Monologues,” put on by fellow students
at the University community. The “Vagina Monologues”
have essentially taken former taboo subjects, surrounding sex,
violence, birth and more, and made them appropriate topics of
discussion.

Students can also attend events, speeches and a rally on the
Diag in honor of V-Day. These activities address a wide range of
topics and aim to raise awareness on an extensive variety of
issues. Among the more pressing issues facing women around the
world are female genital mutilation and sexual slavery. These
issues, which have little bearing on life in America, affect the
lives of millions of women across the planet.

Students should support the V-Day efforts made to help women and
children around the world.

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