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"Vagina Monologues" at Connecticut College to raise money to staff shelter at Women's Center

NEW LONDON, Conn. - They call themselves Vagina Warriors, and participants in "The Vagina Monologues" at Connecticut College are fighting the good fight - using the funds raised from this year's show to help staff the emergency safe house at the Women's Center of Southeastern Connecticut and to aid women and girls in the Democratic Republic of the Congo. The safe house recently lost the funding for its overnight coverage.

A cast of students and staff will perform March 27 and 28 at 7:30 p.m. in Evans Hall, Cummings Arts Center. Tickets are $10 for the general public and $7 for students and can be purchased in advance by calling the box office at 860-439-ARTS. Additional donations are greatly appreciated.

The Vagina Monologues," a play of 15 monologues written by Eve Ensler, is an international phenomenon that celebrates women's sexuality and strength through humor and grace, while raising funds for antiviolence groups worldwide. Every monologue somehow relates to the vagina, be it through sex, menstruation, rape, birth or love. For the past six years, Connecticut College has performed "The Vagina Monologues" with the hope of spreading the importance of female empowerment and respect.

"This performance has facilitated discussion and awareness of these important issues, both on campus and in the greater community," said "Vagina Monologues" producer Megan Nashban, a member of the class of 2009.

Last year approximately $2,000 was donated to the Women's Center of Southeastern Connecticut on behalf of The Vagina Monologues production at Connecticut College. This year the warriors hope to triple their proceeds. Seventy-five percent of the revenue will go to the Women's Center to help bring back overnight coverage at their safe house, which due to years of underfunding now needs $125,000 to return to 24-hour coverage, according to Cathy Zeiner, executive director of the Women's Center of Southeastern Connecticut.

"When we are there 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, we can provide the additional support, encouragement and precautions necessary to help keep victims safe, and prevent them from having to return to their abusers," said Cathy Zeiner, executive director of the Women's Center of Southeastern Connecticut. "…The money raised from the Vagina Monologues will be a great help to us. It will allow us to provide emergency staffing during those times when we have a particularly fragile victim in shelter. We are profoundly grateful for all the hard work that the Connecticut College students are doing to give us that extra support."

In addition, 25 percent will go to the V-Day Spotlight Fund: Power to the Women and Girls of the Democratic Republic of Congo.

About Connecticut College

Situated on the coast of southern New England, Connecticut College is a highly selective private liberal arts college with 1900 students from all across the country and throughout the world. On the college's 750-acre arboretum campus overlooking Long Island Sound, students and faculty create a vibrant social, cultural and intellectual community enriched by diverse perspectives. The college, founded in 1911, is known for its unique combination of interdisciplinary studies, international programs, funded internships, student-faculty research and service learning.

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March 4, 2009