Diana Oliva Aroche of the Mayor's Office of Violence Prevention celebrates the One Billion Rising movement at the Women's Building. Photo by Cristiano Valli

Women and girls from Mission nonprofits met at the Women’s Building Friday evening to join in the international movement “One Billion Rising,” and to accept a proclamation honoring local organizations from state senator Mark Leno.

Attendees listen to speakers at a One Billion Rising event at the Women’s Building on Friday. Photo by Cristiano Valli

The name “One Billion Rising” is drawn from the statistic that one in three women will be beaten or raped in her lifetime, an estimate that would indicate one billion women worldwide experience gender-based violence. The movement began in February 2012 as an artistic and collaborative response to violence and sexual assault against women. Each year since then, the organization has chosen a new area of focus. 2016’s actions center on the problems facing marginalized women specifically.

Women and girls reflect on people they love. Photo by Cristiano Valli

“We need change, and we need change fast,” Leno said at the event.

He also took aim at Republican efforts nationwide to cut funding for Planned Parenthood and other health centers on basis of their opposition to abortion.

“They want to defund what is often times the only option that low income women have in this country for their basic health needs,” Leno said. “That is violence against women.”

Some history of One Billion Rising. Photo by Cristiano Valli

Mission Girls, the neighborhood youth program for at-risk girls and young women, was specifically honored by a San Francisco One Billion Rising organizer, who called attention to their recently released song and music video “We Are the Women.” The song is a feminist pop and hip-hop composition written and arranged by the young girls in collaboration with Future Youth Records and Hieroglyphics’ A-Plus.

A mural created for One Billion Rising with a message against violence. Photo by Cristiano Valli

“Everything we see today and everything we see around the world shows that young women are standing up and rising,” said the organizer at the event, speaking with the video’s creators. “You are such role models.”

Follow Us

Leave a comment

Please keep your comments short and civil. We will zap comments that fail to adhere to these short and very easy-to-follow rules.

Your email address will not be published.