Zonta Foothills Club of Boulder CO takes action against campus rape culture, creates “Culture of Respect”

Knowing that the University of Colorado (UC) community and surrounding college campuses are dealing first-hand with the atrocities of campus rape culture, the Zonta Foothills Club of Boulder CO is taking action around Zonta Says NO to Violence Against Women! This year, the Club is implementing an in-depth plan to spread their message throughout Boulder County to take action. Members started with the “20 Minutes of Action” Rally at CU,  and are now working with their community schools to create a “Culture of Respect”  that protects women from sexual intimidation and reaches even more deeply to respect all students, teachers and members of the community.

Here is their story:

20 Minutes of Action
The Zonta Foothill Club of Boulder CO co-sponsored a CU Rally entitled “20 minutes of Action” that more than 200 people attended. Local TV and print media attended this rally, which was named from a quote by the father of a former Stanford University athlete convicted on multiple charges of sexual assault. The father told the press said his son should not have to go to prison for “20 minutes of action.” This rally brought the community together. MESA, the CU Women’s Resource Center, The Watershed School, and students of University of Colorado Boulder were one with the Zonta Foothills Club in saying “NO” to sexual violence on campus.

Boulder Valley Schools Board of Education on Zonta Says No!
The Zonta Foothills Club of Boulder CO had a contingent of speakers attend a public session to describe the Zonta Says NO to Violence Against Women campaign, and urge the board of education to take action. Speakers included: Zonta members Julie Martinez and Kay Meyer, Camilo Casas (Men Standing Up coordinator, Moving to End Sexual Assault), Adela Aguirre (Boulder High School student and PantherZ Z Club President), and Libby Symes (CU student and Boulder HS alumna) Our call to action was the creation of a task force to look at possible curricula for K-12 that address gender, relationships, bullying and others related to violence against women. The Club is following up with individual meetings with board members to follow up on implementation.

Front Range Community College Silent Witness Project
Working with Women’s History class students at FRCU, the Zonta Foothills Club of Boulder CO created and hung Silent Witness silhouettes all around their local campus. They also hung fliers in every bathroom stall on campus urging victims to “Make the Call” and providing 24-hour hotline numbers for MESA and St Vrain Safe Shelter. It contains the Zonta Says NO to Violence Against Women logo and encourage victims to call MESA or St Vrain Safe Shelter for help.

The Boulder High School PantherZ Z Club ZSN project
The Club made 25  Silent Witness  silhouettes in black (for sexual violence story) and yellow (for rape culture story) which will they hung in the school’s library. They also hung “Make the Call” fliers in bathrooms and bulletin boards throughout the school. Finally, the club produced a 40-second video for the school’s Panther TV to ask their school to sign in the “Culture of Respect” pledge. A banner of the pledge and a large sign up flier is hung in the school’s central hall.

Audrie & Daisy Screening
Club members and community guests viewed a screening of Audrie & Daisy, an impactful documentary that tells the real tragedy of a rape culture in a small Missouri town.

Displayed Silent Witness project at MESA’s Brave, Bold and Beautiful
This fundraiser supports Moving to End Sexual Assault. All funds raised will help to maintain the 24-hour hotline, educational work, victim support and other efforts, to help stem sexual violence in our community. The Club is proud to exhibit their 25 Zonta Says NO Silent Witness silhouettes, and their Zonta Says No to Violence Against Women information at this event. Their participation brought the Zonta International message to more than 200 Boulder County supporters. Ten club members also worked at the event helping set up and  manage the silent auction.

“Culture of Respect” Campaign
The men’s and women’s basketball teams at two local high schools are working together to support the Culture of Respect in their schools. The Club met with team captains and they invited more than 70 team members, grades 9-12 to put together a full “Culture of Respect” plan and secure the team’s support for promoting in this pledge their school. They then went to the entire program and coordinated a two-hour  session where 70 athletes worked together to create and hang their own Silent Witness Project around Fairview High School. The Boulder High School basketball program is also participating in the “Culture of Respect.” Working with their school’s PantherZ  Z Club, they will be gathering signatures and then, at their January 27 competition, the teams from both schools will come mid court announce their support of the pledge and urge their communities to sign on in support of creating this community-wide culture.

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