STAMFORD, Conn. — Many in Stamford came together Thursday afternoon to join the worldwide One Billion Rising movement to raise awareness against domestic violence.
“I want to show support for the people who can’t speak,” said Stephanie Leon, a freshman at Westhill High School. She was one of about 20 students from the school to take part in the event.
“It’s time for violence against women to stop,” said Rita Bailey, a medical advocacy volunteer with the Domestic Violence Crisis Center.
The event included several Zumba routines to songs that promote standing up to domestic violence, the Unitarian Universalist Society church rang its bells, and several people read poems and messages of why they participated.
“I rise for my children because if I don’t who will,” said Tracy Guglieri, a counselor at the Center for Sexual Assault Crisis Counseling and Education.
The One Billion Rising campaign was started to encourage people to come together and raise awareness against domestic violence, a statement said. Leading the campaign is Eve Ensler, founder of V-Day, a movement that promotes awareness about gender-based violence and raises money for anti-violence organizations, the statement said.
“It brings people who don’t think about abuse every day out,” said Ivonne Zucco, executive director of the Center for Sexual Assault Crisis Counseling and Education, explaining the benefits of public events.
According to the Center for Sexual Assault Crisis Counseling and Education, one in 11 women in Connecticut has survived rape, and one in five girls in the state has been a victim of sexual assault. Last year, the state had to reimburse hospitals for more than 1,500 sexual assault forensic exams, the center reports.