Carrie Laudie | Staff Writer | @carrielaudie
The Clothesline Project, hosted by Utah Valley University Turning Point and Women’s Success Center, will be displayed at Centre Stage on Monday October 20 and Tuesday October 21 from 8:00 a.m.- 7:00 p.m. There will be special programs held each night, hosted by the Utah County Domestic Violence Coalition, from 7:00 – 8:00 p.m. in room SC 206ABC. The programs will consist of musical numbers and presentations by survivors of domestic violence. Following the Tuesday night event there will be a candlelight vigil for victims of violence that did not survive.
“It is a very powerful presentation giving voice to people whose lives have been affected by violence and abuse and brings an awareness to the public of the prevalence of violence in our own community and the depth of trauma that these people have experienced,” said Lujean Marshall, UVU Turning Point coordinator. “This year we are focusing on the resources available to help break the cycle of abuse.”
The Clothesline Project began in Cape Cod, MA, when a group called the Cape Cod Women’s Defense Agenda discovered that 58,000 soldiers had been killed in Vietnam, and during that same time 51,000 women were killed in the United States by men who claimed to love them. Anyone who has been affected by violence is given the opportunity to decorate a shirt and hang it on a clothesline, as a visual representation and to bring attention to the problem of violence in our community. UVU has been hosting a Clothesline Project since 1998 and it has grown over the years, from being under a canopy in the courtyard to the event that it is today.
This particular Clothesline Project is the product of shirts decorated by victims in Utah County. Many different emotions are represented on the shirts and for many who have been affected by violence, this is a very healing experience.
The theme for this year’s Clothesline Project is “There is a solution. Be part of it.” There will be shirts available to the public, free of charge, for anyone who would like to share their story. There will also be tables set up with information on many subjects including sexual assault and rape, domestic violence and child abuse. There will also be information about community organizations and how and where to go for help.
“One of the primary goals of the Clothesline Project is to let survivors know that they are not alone and that there is hope. It takes tremendous courage to make a shirt for the Clothesline Project and we strive to provide a safe and healing environment for those who choose to share their story. In addition, we hope that everyone who reads the shirts will be inspired to commit to ending the epidemic of violence,” said Jennie Briggs of UVU Turning Point.
According to the group Futures Without Violence, (www.futureswithoutviolence.org), one in four women report experiencing violence by a current or former partner at some point in their life, on average more than three women a day are murdered by their husband or boyfriend in the United States, two out of three children are exposed to trauma and violence and one in five tweens knows a victim of dating violence.
“I implore the audience viewing the project to go to the resource tables at Centre Stage and in the Hall of Flags to learn more about violence in our community and what they can do to make a difference,” said Marshall.
For more information about the Clothesline Project and/or Special Program, please contact Turning Point at (801) 863-7580 or [email protected]. For additional information about volunteer opportunities, please contact Jennie Briggs at [email protected]. To view past UVU Clothesline Project t-shirts, please visit www.clotheslineproject.info.
Carrie is the Editor in Chief for the 2015-2016 school year.