May 2011

Sexual violence sees no color, age, sex, or creed.  1 in 4 girls and 1 in 6 boys will be sexually abused (CDC)

ARTS FOR AWARENESS: A charity multimedia event to “Shatter the Silence of Sexual Violence” with MTV’s Sarah Rice

Celebrities, musicians, poets and artists came together to lend their talent to shatter the silence of sexual violence at a multimedia event at the Red Bull Space in Soho on Thursday, May 5 produced by Rusted Blue Entertainment for PAVE: Promoting Awareness, Victim Empowerment.  Hundreds of participants enjoyed live performances by artists including Ernie Gaines (who has recorded with TI), celebrity appearances including MTV’s Sarah Rice, fine art silent auction, down-home comfort food from Justin Timberlake’s restaurant Southern Hospitality, and sponsored drinks from High & Mighty Beer Co. and Berentzen.

MTV reality star Sarah Rice discussed her experience of coming out on national television about her own experience with sexual abuse and the tremendous response she had from viewers – thousands of young people reached out to her to share their own experience. According to the CDC, sexual abuse effects 1 in 4 girls and 1 in 6 boys – it is extremely prevalent but many people suffer in silence.  During her healing process, Sarah used art as a means of expression because finding words after trauma can often be difficult. Sarah has been a PAVE Ambassador for nearly three years and works with PAVE’s art programs with groups to heal, educate, empower and shatter the silence of sexual violence.

Poet Kelechukwu Brnfre crafted a piece of spoken word about his own experience of sexual trauma and the need to heal. Award-winning film maker Calvin Standifer created a short film that he screened at the event that was inspired by PAVE’s work.

 The Founder of PAVE: Promoting Awareness, Victim Empowerment, Angela Rose, presented a compelling testimony that every person knows someone who has been affected by sexual assault and how people have to power to make a positive impact on their community. She said, “Since I founded PAVE ten years ago, we’ve found that using art is a powerful and positive way to create awareness and engage people to take action on this important issue.”

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