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MN creatives develop multimedia arts project to empower, help protect women against violence

In Communities that KARE, women from different artistic disciplines use their skills to draw attention to an important social issue.


2023 UPDATE:

The story below first aired on Sept. 11, 2022 about a group of Minnesotans who released a project to help raise awareness of the violence against women, especially in the BIPOC community.

The video has been nominated for the Midwest Country Music Organization's Video of the Year. The winner will be announced April 22 at the Midwest CMO Awards ceremony in Arnold's Park Iowa.


A group of female creatives from Minneapolis and Duluth are about to release a multimedia art project that supports the safety of BIPOC women in our community.

"Do You Think You Protect Me" started as a song, but over the course of two years, it turned into the start of a movement to help empower and protect women.

"We live in a culture where there's a lack of safety, and if that's true for me, as a white woman, and I walk around feeling that way, how much more so is that true for Black women, for Indigenous women?" explained Emily Haavik, the writer of the song.

Haavik provided startling statistics from the Office of Justice Programs and the National Center on Violence Against Women in the Black Community:

According to these statistics, 84% of Indigenous women have experienced violence in their lifetime.

For every Black woman who reports a sexual assault, it is believed at least 15 Black women do not report it. 

Haavik teamed up with a group of women from different artistic disciplines to create a musical and visual project based on the song to benefit the Minnesota Coalition Against Sexual Assault.

Jillian Rae produced the piece. "The build-up and orchestral beauty of the way the song turned out is pretty cool and moving," she said. "The song itself, you'll know when you hear it, but it's really meaningful, I think, of course for women, but for anybody who cares."

The message is clear, "We are saying we are tired of this. That it's time for a change and that we want to see men step up, kind of look at themselves, and see where they are contributing to the problem and then join the fight to make this a safer world for women," said Haavik.

The video release and benefit concert will be on Saturday, Sept. 24 from 6 p.m. to 10 p.m. at the Cedar Cultural Center in Minneapolis.

After paying the bands, all proceeds from the release concert will go toward MNCASA and their work supporting survivors. 

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