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“I am rising because I refuse to accept violence against women.” – Former resident of Interval House.
On Monday, April 28th, Interval House took part in the One Billion Rising rally at Yonge-Dundas Square. And as soon as we arrived, we could tell something big was about to happen.
Just after 5:30, the song Respect began blaring through the speakers. And suddenly, the crowd of people gathered in the square all stood together with their right index finger raised high in the air. It began. We were rising.
The crowd of people slowly lowered their fingers and broke out into a choreographed dance! You could tell by their faces that they were dancing for a purpose. They were dancing for justice. They were dancing for change. They were dancing to end violence against women.
Once the dance was over, the speeches began. We watched and listened as movers and shakers in the campaign to end violence against women raised their voices. Leaders like Eve Ensler, Tabby Johnson, Glen Canning, Michele Landsberg, and 12 year old Alyna Nanji spoke out against abuse. They also spoke about their hopes and dreams for a violent-free future. They inspired us to believe that this future is possible if we all work together and take a stand against violence against women.
All of us from Interval House who attended were deeply moved not only by the speakers, but by the empowering energy of the crowd. We were surrounded by people just like us. People who believe that violence against women is deplorable and must stop. People who we are proud to stand beside as we continue to break down barriers and work toward building a world in which women do not need to leave in fear of violence.
Check out our Facebook album for pics from the event.