Hivos East Africa supports “One Billion Rising” Campaign with theatre

March 19, 2013

One in three women on the planet will be beaten or raped during her lifetime. Those are the shocking statistics that women have to deal with.

On 28 February 2013, the Hivos Regional Office in East Africa, in partnership with the Kenyan performing Arts company ‘Arts Canvas’, staged a production of The Vagina Monologues by the American playwright Eve Ensler. The production was part of a number of other events taking place all over the world from 1 January to 30 April as part of the “One Billion Rising” Campaign to mobilise against Violence Against Women (VAW).

Coming just a few days prior to the general elections in Kenya on 4 March 2013, the event was also very relevant in encouraging dialogue to prevent the Gender Based electoral violence that was visited on hundreds of Kenyan women during the 2007/2008 post election violence. 

Other Kenyan organisations that are also organising activities around the One Billion Rising Campaign   include the Coalition on Violence against women.

This year’s beneficiary from the proceeds of The Vagina Monologues will be Nairobi-based NGO Women’s Rights Awareness Programme (WRAP). Since 1994, it has hosted Kenya’s sole domestic shelter for abused and violated women and their children. In addition, WRAP provides women (and men) with legal aid, alternative accommodation, trauma counselling, marital counselling, mediation, reconciliation, reintegration and resettlement.

Hivos invests over nine million euros annually in innovative programmes and partners that promote women’s empowerment and advance women’s rights, including sexual and reproductive rights. We also back initiatives that enable women and girls to hold government and companies accountable for non-compliance with anti-discrimination policies. Both organisations and women’s rights activists receive our support.