Each October, residents of Solid Ground’s Broadview Shelter and Transitional Housing participate in The Clothesline Project to raise awareness about gender-based violence and express their feelings about their personal experiences.
The Clothesline is made up of T-shirts created by survivors of domestic violence (DV), or in honor of someone who’s experienced DV. Solid Ground displays many of the shirts each year at our Wallingford facility.
“For residents at Broadview, the Clothesline Project is a chance to have their voices heard in the larger community,” says Domestic Violence Program Manager Stacey M. “It’s also a chance to express themselves through art and to use their personal creativity.
“Most importantly, since we’ve been so isolated with COVID these last two and a half years, it was important that they did it together. We still haven’t started having our DV support group in person yet (although we’re about to), so seeing the women working in a shared space and admiring each other’s work was a beautiful thing to witness,” Stacey says. “I’m so glad to be a part of this annual ritual.”
The Clothesline Project started in Hyannis, Massachusetts in 1990 when members of the Cape Cod Women’s Defense Agenda discovered a horrific reality: During the same timeframe when 58,000 U.S. soldiers were killed in the Vietnam War, 51,000 U.S. women were also killed at home by the men who claimed to love them. The project that began with 31 T-shirts has since expanded to more than 600 active projects in communities across the country today.
From the Clothesline Project website:
The Clothesline Project is a visual reminder of statistics that are often ignored. It gives voice to those who have been forcibly silenced. And it provides survivors with a venue to courageously break the silence and make us aware. Hopefully, it stirs us to action.
These shirts will hang in the second-floor lobby of Solid Ground’s Wallingford office at 1501 North 45th Street through the end of October. Come by and view them any weekday from 11am-4pm.
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