V-Day Campaign aims for wider audience

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    In an attempt to make a greater impact on campus, organizers of this year’s TCU V-Day Campaign coordinated events outdoors and geared more toward both sexes.

    Katie Caruso, senior theater major and coordinator for the TCU V-Day Campaign, said this year she hoped to generate a greater impact on campus by offering events for a wider audience that focused on issues related to the topic of violence against women.

    One of those events, called Hope Market, was scheduled to take place Wednesday on the second floor of the Brown-Lupton University Union. The event aimed to educate people of the conditions of employment of the companies people buy products from, Caruso said.

    “You can make your dollar count no matter who you are. You’re going to spend it anyway, so why not spend it in a conscious, helpful effort?” Caruso said.

    The market will include many local vendors like Aduro Bean & Leaf and Beloveds Mercantile. A portion of the sales from local vendors would go to support the TCU V-Day Campaign, she said.

    In efforts to make this year’s V-Day campaign more public, the “Read My Lips” Poetry Slam will take place outdoors in the BLUU Amphitheater, rather than inside the BLUU Auditorium, Caruso said. The poetry slam is an event that allows people to get up and share their poetry to an audience. People would also personally hand out fliers and talk one on one with students about the event.

    Last year’s V-Day campaign raised $3,000 dollars from the whole week of events. Caruso said she did not know the total number of attendance for all V-Day events, but 150 people attended each performance of “The Vagina Monologues.”

    The V-Day campaign is a week long series of events, and TCU’s mission for V-Day is to raise awareness and to stop violence against women and girls. The daily events all lead up to a performance of “The Vagina Monologues” by Eve Ensler.

    According to the V-Day website, “The Vagina Monologues,” was a play that went beyond artistic expression by moving people to take action to end violence against women and girls.

    In 2010, over 5,400 performances of the play were held around the world. What started with one event has turned into a global movement to stop violence against women and girls, according to vday.org.

    Caruso said she believed the event was directly relatable to college campuses because there were many expectations for young women in society. She said V-Day was about empowering and letting women know they have the ability to define their own roles in society.

    “It is hard for me to wrap my head around people not being involved because [the cause is] so relatable,” Caruso said. “Everybody has a mom, sisters, friends, girlfriends, wives and fiancees. Why wouldn’t you want to protect them? Why wouldn’t you want to empower them?”

    Junior biology major Maryam Arastu said she thought people could deny that this violence occurred. Events like the V-Day campaign that raised awareness would be beneficial to bring the issue of violence against women to light, she said.

    “It’s definitely a good thing. We are all so engrossed in our own little bubble, we never really see outside,” Arastu said.

    She added that events like the V-Day campaign would give confidence to more women and educate more men about the issue.

    Caruso said 90 percent of proceeds from any money raised during the week, including ticket sales for “The Vagina Monologues,” would go to The Women’s Center of Tarrant County. The other 10 percent would go to support relief work in Haiti, she said.

    “V-Day will inspire people to be confident in their choices and their beliefs no matter where they’re coming from,” Caruso said.

    “Read My Lips” Poetry Slam featuring Michael Guinn and the Fort Worth Poetry Slam Team

    When: 7 p.m. Monday

    Where: Brown-Lupton University Union Amphitheater

    “Hope Market” Conscientious Consumerism Fair

    When: 11 a.m.-2 p.m. Wednesday

    Where: BLUU, second floor

    “Educate to End Violence” featuring performances by TCU’s Assault Prevention Theatre

    When: Thursday; 5 p.m. balloon release to honor those lost to sexual violence

    Where: BLUU Auditorium

    “The Vagina Monologues” by Eve Ensler

    When: 2:30 p.m. and 7:30 p.m. Saturday; 2:30 p.m. Sunday

    Where: BLUU Auditorium