Students Use Drama, Fundraisers to Support Local Charity
CHICKASHA -- While many people spent Valentine's Day busying themselves with flowers, cards and chocolates, a group of college students have been planning several fundraisers and events aimed at helping prevent violence against women and girls.
Students at the University of Science and Arts are gearing up for several days of raising funds and awareness as part of the national V-Day College Campaign, a week worth of special activities that extends past Valentine's Day into the month of February itself. Proceeds for all the events benefit the Grady County Women's Service and Family Resource Center.
The V-Day College Campaign is designed to empower women to find their collective voices and demand an end to violence and abuse on campuses, in communities and around the world.
Sponsored by the student-led Feminist Collective, the V-Day campaign culminates with the student production, " The Vagina Monologues," Feb. 28 and March 1 at 8 p.m. in the Davis Hall Little Theatre. Penned by award-winning writer Eve Ensler, the play is aimed at a mature audience due to content and language. Tickets are $10 at the door.
" I am honored to co-direct this important play with (Chickasha communication junior) Arielle Green," Powers said. " I feel that raising awareness of the violence inflicted on women, all over the world, is something vital to healing all the rifts in humanity. Without both sexes being treated with respect, there cannot be any peace."
Cast members include Dr. Aleisha Karjala, assistant professor of political science, Chickasha history junior Carlena Murray, Chickasha biology senior Eryn Bass, Tulsa English senior ZanÃ©a McLoughlin, Rush Springs music freshman Audrey Hodges, Chickasha psychology senior Chelsea Huddleston and Anadarko sociology sophomore Shannon Harvey.
Also, Marlow communication sophomore Heather Reimer, Tuttle English junior Melody Dobbins, Norman psychology freshman Chelsea Davis, Chickasha music freshman Megan Soloman, Fort Sill history sophomore Laura Haithcock, Pauls Valley art freshman Whitney Whitaker, Mustang drama sophomore Tegan Switzer, Arielle Green and Sarah Powers.
According to the national organization, V-Day has raised more than $35 million worldwide and has educated millions about the issue of violence against women and the efforts to end it. More than 5000 community-based anti-violence programs, shelters and safe houses have been built in Kenya, Egypt, Iraq and the U.S. by funding from V-Day events. More information is available online at www.vday.org.
All proceeds for the V-Day events on the USAO campus benefit the Grady County Women's Service and Family Resource Center. All events are open to the public.