Monday 22nd April 2024
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One Billion Rising – Anoushka Shankar shares her story

One Billion Rising is the 15th anniversary of "V-Day", a global movement to end violence against women and girls by both increasing awareness and raising money. 

Many well-known personalities have endorsed the campaign, encouraging others to get involved as well. One such person is Anoushka Shankar – daughter of the late Pandit Ravi Shankar and Tamilian Sukanya Rajan. In a video released at the end of last month, the musician revealed that she had suffered sexual and emotional abuse at the hands of a trusted family friend. She continued on to say that she is often "living in fear, afraid to walk alone at night," and unfortunately, this is the case for many women around the world. 

The sad thing is that though one in three women will be raped or beaten in her lifetime, it is not an issue that is openly discussed, and as a result, vicitms can often feel like there’s nobody to turn to. Hopefully, the fact that well-known faces are beginning to be more open about their experiences will help others to realise that they are not alone, and that help is at hand.

Sangeetha Ravichandran, program director of Chicago-based non-profit organisation "A Long Walk Home", also made a video for V-Day. A Long Walk Home uses art therapy and visual and performing arts to end violence against girls and women. Born and raised in India, Sangeetha moved to the us to pursue a career in fine art. She regularly goes back to Chennai, India, where she works at the International Center for Crime Prevention and Victim Care.

What is shocking in her video, is the number of abuse survivors Sangeetha herself knows personally – she mentions her mother, her sister and herself as survivors of gender-based violence:

Today’s events are taking place in cities all over the world, and you can find out where your nearest Rising is by clicking here. There is also a live feed of One Billion Rising events that are occuring in numerous countries across the globe, which can be viewed by visiting the movement’s website