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La Luz Center hosts One Billion Rising event to speak out against violence against women on Valentine’s Day

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La Luz Center on Valentine’s Day will be all about women and coming together under the envelope of One Billion Rising, a global campaign to end violence against women.

“It’s a day of solidarity,” Angie Sanchez, manager of community engagement at La Luz, said of the One Billion Rising platform and the La Luz event planned for Feb. 14.

La Luz is partnering with the YWCA to present its One Billion Rising event, where women can get together, talk about domestic violence or sexual abuse and discrimination, and learn about mental health resources. They will have an opportunity to create a “vision board,” Sanchez said, where they can map out what they want to do for themselves in what she described as “self-care.”

“Women are always taking care of the children,” or a husband, and not doing enough for themselves. This vision board could show a woman’s desire to go back to school, start an exercise program or do something creative.

When they are done the women will join in a circle and share their vision boards with one another and talk about whatever else they choose.

Women’s farmworkers group Lideres Campesinas used to hold events in conjunction with One Billion Rising, but the group is no longer active. Still, Sanchez wanted to resurrect the tradition.

A representative from local law enforcement will be on hand to share information on how to report domestic violence, and the YWCA will offer advice on where to go for help with mental health, therapy, empowerment, shelter and safety concerns.

One Billion Rising started in 2013 as a way to bring attention to violence against women. Group events take place now in more than 170 countries.

The La Luz event is free and includes lunch. Reservations requested. Contact Sanchez at angie@laluzcenter.org or call 938-5131. The event will be held in Booker Hall at La Luz Center, 17560 Greger St.

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