In the fight to end violence against women and girls, the Kalamazoo community will participate in a day of dancing this Thursday, Feb. 14, at 4:30 p.m. in Bronson Park. Founded by activist and playwright, Eve Ensler, One Billion Rising is the largest day of action against violence of women and girls in the history of Valentines Day, according to a press release.
The dance will start with an hour of dancing and marching through Bronson park and the downtown mall. Everyone is welcome to attend the outdoor event, Kristen Jennings, co-organizer of the event, said.
One Billion Rising is taking place all over the world to raise awareness in ending violence against women and children, Jennings said.
“It’s pretty amazing,” said Jennings. “It’s incredible how much is happening all over the world.”
Continuing indoors at Tuckers Ballroom Dance Studio, at 210 Farmers Alley, the dancing will continue with poetry and community building with a 100 person limit, according to Jennings.
“We’re bringing the metaphor to life,” said Jennings. “We’re gonna shake the earth under our feet.”
The name One Billion Rising comes from the statistic that 1 in 3 women will be abused or raped in their lifetime, Jennings said. Since the world population is over 7 billion, that’s more than 1 billion women.
There’s even a particular song, written just for the event called “Break the Chain,” Jennings said.
“It’s specifically a day of dance action [with] people rising up all over the world in dance,” Jennings said. “It’s a global event, so things are going to be happening all over the world on Valentines Day, specifically around this cause.”