The Pixel Project is six years old today:
Six years of our all-volunteer team across 4 continents collaborating to raise awareness, funds and volunteer power for the movement to end Violence Against Women (VAW), our sister and brother anti-VAW activists and the women and girls who survive VAW.
Six years of persistence in experimenting with (and implementing) positive, innovative and effective new ways of using online tools, social media, and pop culture/the arts to reach out to individuals and communities.
Six years of building platforms that make it easy, enjoyable, and fun for everyone from the person on the street to various communities to get on board the cause to end VAW.
Six years of establishing, building, and nurturing our ongoing anti-VAW campaigns, projects, and programmes.
Six years of building partnerships with allies that range from anti-VAW organisations and campaigns of all shapes and sizes, to award-winning bestselling authors, to music artistes using their songs to sound the clarion call for the end to VAW.
Six years of persisting with developing and running our massive flagship Celebrity Male Role Model Pixel Reveal campaign in an effort to accelerate the shift in the conversation towards including men and boys in helping stop VAW.
And now, onwards to our annual review of the year that came before:
2014 has been a year of building blocks and breakthroughs for The Pixel Project. The main event of the year was the official launch of our flagship Celebrity Male Role Model Pixel Reveal campaign on International Women’s Day 2014 after 5 years of hard work by our all-volunteer team who have devoted their evenings, weekends, and vacation/holiday time to making the campaign a reality.
We raised $10,362 (10,362 pixels revealed) in our first phase post-campaign launch and this is how we did it:
We counted down to the campaign 21st century style with:
- The “30 Artistes, 30 Songs, 30 Days” campaign (30/30/30) in partnership with the Positive Music Association and spearheaded by our YouTube Music Ambassador AHMIR and featuring a positive and uplifting song for women and girls released for free download for every day in the month leading up to the launch. For the full list of all 30 YouTube and Independent artistes who have so kindly and generously taken part in this campaign, visit the 30/30/30 Artiste Gallery and click on each artiste’s picture to learn more about them.
- The “Who Is Your Male Role Model?” YouTube public service announcement campaign completed its run between International Elimination of Violence Against Women Day and International Women’s Day with PSAs from men from all walks of life, including Grammy Award-winning artiste Michael Bolton:
Then we launched the campaign with a series of live Google Hangouts on Air including:
- Discussions with UN Women, National Coalition Against Domestic Violence, Stop Street Harassment, White Ribbon Campaign, Soraya Chemaly, Jaclyn Friedman and other anti-VAW organisations and activists.
- Readings and discussions with award-winning bestselling authors including Cornelia Funke, Kelley Armstrong, Issac Marion, and Jacqueline Carey.
We also kicked off two new campaigns in support of the Pixel Reveal campaign:
- The Survivor Stories Project featuring interviews with survivors of VAW throughout the month of May to honour Mother’s Day and provide VAW survivors with a way to tell their stories and support the Pixel Reveal campaign.
- The Read For Pixels campaign featuring Google Hangouts, Indiegogo fundraisers, and a Spring short story fundraiser with award-winning bestselling authors including Alyson Noel, Chuck Wendig, Cinda Williams Chima, Delilah S. Dawson, Ellen Hopkins, G. Willow Wilson, Guy Gavriel Kay, Jasper Fforde, Joe Hill, Kevin Hearne, Robert J. Sawyer, and Sarah J. Maas. This campaign also saw The Pixel Project collaborating for the first time with reddit. In particular, we collaborated with the Books (/r/books) and Fantasy (/r/fantasy) subreddits to hold a special Read For Pixels Ask Me Anything (AMA) session with the support of the Victoria Taylor, reddit’s Director of Communications, Steve Drew, founder of reddit’s Fantasy subreddit, and 12 reddit moderators.
Both the Survivor Stories Project and Read For Pixels were successes:
- We have a major influx of survivors submitting their stories for the Survivor Stories Project, at least 2 of whom has gone on to become Pixel Project volunteers. Welcome aboard Endriani Siswanti and Christine Davis!
- The Read For Pixels campaign became our first big fundraising success for the Pixel Reveal campaign with approximately $9,000 raised by 16 authors via several online fundraisers.
In the meantime, our ongoing campaigns continue to slowly but steadily build momentum and gain traction as they continue to support the Pixel Reveal campaign:
- The Twitter Tag Team now has close to 19,000 followers – that is over 2000 more followers we had this time last year helping us retweet our daily global VAW helpline retweet session.
- Our Facebook page has now reached 20,000 fans with a very lively community respectfully discussing the various posts and news. In Spring 2014, we reached 700,000 post views – a new milestone in our efforts to take our anti-VAW message viral.
- The “30 For 30” Father’s Day campaign continues to successfully recruited good, non-violent men from all walks of life to stand up publicly to say NO to violence against women.
- The “16 For 16” blogging campaign in honour of the 16 Days of Activism Against Gender-based Violence also continues to grow as we accumulate an archive of positive articles packed with shareable ideas, information, and solutions for inspiring individuals and communities to take action to stop VAW.
- The People and Pets Say NO photo statement campaign continues to run steadily with people from all walks of life submitting pictures of them and their pets saying NO to VAW during Domestic Violence Awareness Month.
- Our Music For Pixels campaign also gained steam. In addition to the 30/30/30 campaign, we released our first full-length Music For Pixels digital album featuring 12 30/30/30 artistes performing positive and uplifting songs for women and girls. Plus, a brand new music video PSA from YouTube’s #1 R&B group, AHMIR was launched in March in conjunction with 30/30/30:
These successes paved the way to us reaching our first milestone in our efforts to raise $1 million (1 million pixels revealed) – on December 19th 2014, we reached and passed the $10,000 (10,000 pixels) goalpost, ending with $10,362 raised by December 31st 2014!
As always, we’ve achieved all that we have achieved as a team and in 2014, we welcomed:
- Writers – Samantha Carroll (South Africa) and Rebecca DeLuca (Canada).
- The new head of our Database and Research Team (DART) – Joanne Land-Kazlauskas (USA)
- Our new Outreach Officer – Jeri Ekdahl (USA)
- New Google Hangout moderators – Sasha Alsberg (USA) and Angelia Ong (Malaysia).
- Our first summer intern – Yishu Mao (China) who came on board with thanks to Bard College for generously sponsoring her time with us.
Finally, we thank all the donors who have donated to our general fund to help keep us alive as an organisation:
From Baked KL in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia who held a bake sale fundraiser during Domestic Violence Awareness Month to friends, family, and VAW survivors who have donated what they can during these tough economic times – THANK YOU ALL SO MUCH! Even $10 helps so much in keeping our work afloat!
The Year Ahead
So what does 2015 hold for The Pixel Project? We will be further streamlining our efforts to raise the $1 million (1 million pixels) for the Pixel Reveal campaign and our goal is to raise another $240,000 (240,000 pixels revealed) to reach our $250,000 milestone and unveil the first of our 4 celebrity male role models! Here are of some of the highlights that you can look forward to in 2015:
- Two (2) major Read For Pixels events/fundraisers – A special International Women’s Day edition featuring award-winning bestselling women writers and our second annual standard Read For Pixels Google Hangout series featuring both male and female authors. All participating authors will be speaking out against VAW and also helping raise funds for the Pixel Reveal campaign via Indiegogo fundraisers choc-a-bloc with exclusive geeky goodies.
- A very special online concert fundraiser will be announced in Spring 2015.
- Giving another 31 VAW survivors a voice via our second annual Survivors Stories Project in May 2015.
- Launching our revamped Resources section with a more comprehensive list of resources for women and girls facing VAW, thanks to our dedicated Database and Research Team (DART).
- Getting more men on board the cause to end VAW via our expanded roster of campaigns created for that purpose including our annual “30 For 30” Father’s Day blogging campaign.
- More people and pets putting their best foot/paw forward for the cause via the fourth year of our “People and Pets say NO!” photo statement campaign.
- We’ll be rounding out the year with taking part in 2015’s #GivingTuesday for the first time.
We hope you are as excited as we are about 2015. If you want to get involved with any of these campaigns, we certainly welcome more volunteers and pro bono professionals joining us on our journey towards ending violence against women. Just fill in the volunteer application form and we’ll get back to you!
If you prefer to donate, you can donate in 4 ways:
1. You can donate to reveal pixels via the Celebrity Male Role Model Pixel Reveal campaign to help us reach our goal of $250,000 raised (250,000 pixels) and our first male role model revealed. Funds raised will be shared between The Pixel Project and NCADV.
2. You can donate directly to us to help us keep our work alive. For more details about how your donation will be used, visit our donation page.
3. You can hold a fundraiser for us which could be anything from holding bake sales if you’re a baker to donating a portion of your profits if you run a business to running a marathon and getting folks to sponsor you by donating to us. Get in touch directly with us at firstname.lastname@example.org if you wish to raise funds for us or with us.
4. Download our Music For Pixels charity album which is choc-a-bloc with positive and uplifting songs for women and girls worldwide. The album is available for a limited time only until April 1st 2015. 100% of the nett proceeds go to our general fund to keep us running thanks to the generosity of 12 music artistes and Horus Music who distribute our music for us pro bono. You can even listen before you buy here.
Here’s to The Pixel Project surviving and thriving to continue fighting for the cause for as many years as it takes to eradicate violence against women. May we live to see the day when our work is no longer needed – the day when violence against women is no longer the norm in communities and cultures worldwide. Just as it takes a village to raise a child, it takes a entire community to work together to effectively eradicate the violence against women and girls for good.
It’s time to stop violence against women. Together.
– Regina Yau, Founder and President, The Pixel Project