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Happy International Day of the Girl! On this special day where people everywhere are recognizing girls’ rights and the unique challenges girls face around the world, we are thrilled to present this update from V-Day Managing Director Cecile Lipworth, V-Girls Manager Joliz Cedeño, and One Billion Rising for Justice Global Coordinator for Southern Africa Barbara Mhangami Ruwende on their recent trip to visit our V-Girls in South Africa. Over the past two years these Emotional Creatures have been visiting schools, holding summits, and taking action against issues affecting their communities. They are self proclaimed REFUSERS who provide safe spaces for girls and develop sustainable actions by partnering with other groups who share their vision for a world without violence against women and girls. We celebrate these young girls who are committed to revolutionizing the way girls are seen and treated not only in South Africa, but around the globe.

South Africa RISING: Justice for All
by V-Day Managing Director Cecile Lipworth

I love to travel! It excites me to get on a plane and leave one place and arrive in another. But never more so than when I am headed back to my home country and hometown, Johannesburg, South Africa. And when my travel is V-Day related I know I am going to meet extraordinary people. The excitement that filled me as I boarded the plane for South Africa with Joliz and Barbara was uncontainable. I barely slept on the 17 hour flight.

Over two weeks we met with activists, survivors, choreographers, executives, sex workers, media representatives, youth, men, teachers, students, V-Girls and grassroots leaders. In coffee shops, restaurants, boardrooms, school rooms, on college campuses and in Parliament, we met women and men, young and old, who are ALL impassioned, fiercely determined to create change, and hugely inspiring. Whether I was discussing plans for an Africa Tour of Emotional Creature in 2014, watching our V-Girls in South Africa bond, or hearing how justice should be served during One Billion Rising for Justice meetings, I was in continuous awe of the the creative programs that are happening in South Africa - paradigm changing concepts that activists are putting forward.

It was an amazing two weeks, and I am forever thankful to everyone we met for welcoming me back home and allowing us to be a part of envisioning a new South Africa!

Cecile Lipworth
V-Day Managing Director

Emotional Creatures Changing South Africa!
By V-Girls Manager Joliz Cedeño

There is an energy in South Africa unlike any country I’ve traveled to before. It doesn’t come from its bustling city landscape, but rather the present and palpable desire for change. Upon meeting activists and V-Girls throughout Johannesburg and Cape Town it was evident – South Africans are not ones to wait for justice to come, they are already taking action.

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The Transformative Journey That was South Africa
By Global Coordinator for Southern Africa Barbara Mhangami Ruwende

I journeyed to Johannesburg South Africa, with Cecile Lipworth, Managing Director of V-Day and Joliz Cedeño the V-Girls Manager. We were headed to South Africa to meet with activists, media, dancers, philanthropists and other parties who were interested in the One Billion Rising for JusticeCampaign, a campaign for justice for the victims of rape and violence that would culminate in huge gatherings of people demonstrating and dancing in various places on February 14, 2014. We wanted to get a sense of what activists in South Africa saw as the key justice issues around which they wanted to build the campaign.

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WATCH ONLINE: Malalai Joya In Conversation With Eve Ensler

Last Saturday, Eve sat down with Afghan activist and author Malalai Joya at a sold out event at ABC Home in NYC. The event was livestreamed and the video is available online to watch. If you missed this important conversation we highly recommend checking it out!

WATCH at vday.org/mj >


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