The Pixel Project is 8 years old today:
8 years of being the only anti-VAW nonprofit to specialise in working to raise awareness, funds, and volunteer power to end VAW at the very 21st century intersection of social media, online communities, new technologies, and pop culture/the arts.
8 years of our all-volunteer team across 6 continents collaborating to raise awareness, funds and volunteer power for the movement to end Violence Against Women (VAW).
8 years of establishing and growing our ongoing anti-VAW campaigns, projects, and programmes.
8 years of creating social media-based platforms that make it simple, enjoyable, and fun for everyone from the person on the virtual street to various online communities to get on board the cause to end VAW.
8 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 get the conversation about VAW going amongst individuals and communities.
8 years of helping boost the signal for positive stories of people around the world working to stop VAW as well as the women and girls who survive VAW tell their stories.
8 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.
8 years of 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.
It’s been 8 interesting and action-packed years, to say the least!
And now, onwards to our annual review of the year that came before:
2016 has been a bumpy year of sorts for The Pixel Project:
Though our annual campaigns have outwardly progressed at a steady pace, they were affected by a variety of external circumstances ranging from Google moving Google Hangouts to YouTube Live at very short notice to the U.S. elections resulting in a slowdown in our fundraising due to some of our donors reallocating their charity budgets towards the U.S. elections.
No new campaigns or flagship events launched in 2016. Instead, we used the year to work behind-the-scenes to develop new campaigns, fundraisers, and events that will be rolled out in 2017 and beyond. Due to various external factors, some of our programmes and campaigns in development will be launched later than planned.
On the fundraising side:
2016 was the third year of our massive multi-year flagship Celebrity Male Role Model Pixel Reveal campaign, raising another $12,399 (12,399 pixels) to reach $36,458 (36,458 pixels revealed) by December 31st 2016. This is a small but solid increase from $24,059 (24,059 pixels revealed) raised in our first year of our campaign… and we continue to reveal bits of the first Celebrity Male Role Model’s shirt and now, bits of his skin (check it out here: http://reveal.thepixelproject.net/view-celebrity/ or on the homepage here.)
We raised the bulk of the funds via two (2) fundraising events:
- Our second annual International Women’s Day Edition in March featuring women writers only.
- Our third annual Fall Edition in September featuring both male and female authors.
Since Read For Pixels began in 2014, we’ve had the honour of the support of 60 award-winning bestselling authors, with 24 of these worthy wordsmiths joining the campaign in 2015. They spoke out against VAW via live Google Hangout sessions and helped raise funds for the Pixel Reveal campaign via Indiegogo fundraisers choc-a-bloc with exclusive geeky goodies.
2016 Read For Pixels authors come from a wide range of genres and included well-known names and fan favourites such as Tamora Pierce, Christopher Golden, Tami Hoag, Steven Erikson, and Gregg Hurwitz. Check out the full list of authors here and here as well as our 2016 Read For Pixels Indiegogo video below featuring some of the authors who took part in the Fall 2016 Edition of Read For Pixels:
On the awareness-raising side:
The rest of our ongoing campaigns continue to slowly but steadily build momentum and gain traction as they continue to support the Pixel Reveal campaign:
- Our Facebook page passed the 51,414 Likes mark by December 31st 2016 (up by 5,414 likes from December 31st 2015) with a very lively community respectfully discussing the various posts and news.
- Our Twitter account now has 21,886 followers – 1,686 followers more than we had this time last year helping us retweet our daily global VAW helpline retweet session. Plus, we shifted our daily Helpline Retweet Session content to a VPS, ensuring that there is no downtime for the helplines, headlines, and help articles that we tweet out round the clock.
- The “30 For 30” Father’s Day campaign continued to successfully recruit good, non-violent dads from all walks of life to stand up publicly to say NO to violence against women for the 4th year in a row. We had dads from 12 countries including Australia, Canada, Egypt, India, Kenya, Malaysia, Iraq, Spain, the UK, and the USA.
- 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. 2016 was the second year we have cross-posted them on our new Instagram account which is now gathering a steady stream of followers.
As always, we’ve achieved all that we have achieved as a team and in 2016, we welcomed the following volunteers:
- Graphic Designers – Nazareth Taraz (USA).
- Video Editor – Leslie Ann Epperson (USA)
- Research – Crystian Hicks (USA) and Sarah Stevens (USA).
- Twitter Tag Team – Bernardo Rosa Rodriguez (Belgium)
- Read For Pixels – Elisabeth Swarcz (Germany)
- Gaming For Pixels – Amy Roberts (USA) and Summer Settle (USA)
And we bid farewell to:
- Catalina Rembuyan (our longtime e-News Digest Coordinator)
- Francesca Baietti and Shreya Gupta (our longtime Twitter Tag Team members)
Finally, we thank all the donors who have donated to our general fund to help keep us alive as an organization – 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 alive!
The Year Ahead
We will be further streamlining our efforts by focusing on campaigns that are now established as our team continues to build momentum for our ongoing efforts to raise the $1 million (1 million pixels) for the Pixel Reveal campaign.
Our goal is to reach $70,000 (70,000 pixels revealed) or more raised in our marathon bid to unveil the first of our 4 celebrity male role models via:
1. Two (2) major Read For Pixels events/fundraisers:
- Our third annual International Women’s Day Edition in March 2016 featuring women writers only.
- Our fourth annual Fall Edition in September 2016 featuring both male and female authors.
2. Our first ever Gaming For Pixels Spring Slam:
The Spring Slam will be our first gaming fundraiser which will happen in April 2017 in conjunction with Sexual Assault Awareness Month.
It will also kick off our new ongoing Gaming For Pixels campaign which will focus on working with the gaming community and industry to stop VAW within the gaming world and wider online community. More to be announced over the course of January to April 2017.
We’ll also continue supporting the Pixel Reveal campaign via our annual campaigns including:
- Giving another 31 VAW survivors a voice via our fourth annual Survivors Stories Project (May 2017).
- Encouraging more people and pets putting their best foot/paw forward for the cause via the fifth year of our “People and Pets say NO!” photo statement campaign (October 2017).
- Writing and producing our 8th annual 16 For 16 Blogging campaign (December 2017).
- Running tweetathons with our partners (themes and dates to be announced).
- Our annual “30 For 30” Father’s Day campaign will be on hiatus as our team works throughout 2017 to prepare for a very special edition of the “30 For 30” campaign in 2018.
- Plus, we have a very special announcement coming soon from ourselves and our YouTube Music Ambassaor, AHMIR.
We hope you are as excited as we are about 2017. 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 3 ways:
1. You can donate to reveal pixels via the Celebrity Male Role Model Pixel Reveal campaign to help us reach our major fundraising milestone of $250,000 raised (250,000 pixels) and our first male role model revealed. Funds raised be in support of The Pixel Project and our anti-VAW programmes and campaigns.
2. You can donate directly to us to help us keep our work alive. To donate to us and 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.
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 an 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