Below are quotes from t-shirts in our local Clothesline Project Display...
It wasn’t my fault"

"Why?"

"I ask, why would a monster do such a thing?"

"You will hurt me no more!"

"Childhood should be a beautiful experience"

"Live your life to the fullest—be proud of who you are"

"No More Silence"

"End Violence"

"Listen to me...STOP!"

"Strength is telling, courage is crying."

"Celebrate Survival

 

Clothesline

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Clothesline

Vera House will host a Clothesline Display April 11th - 17th on the third floor of The Canyon at Destiny USA.  Over 300 shirts will be on display, each bearing an individual message of anguish, hope and healing. The display is free and open to the public.

 

 

 

 

What is the Clothesline Project?

  • Such displays provide an opportunity for survivors to bear witness to their personal experience of violence, and to celebrate their transformation from victim to survivor in a powerful statement of solidarity.
  • The Clothesline Project is part of an international effort to educate people about the personal impact of sexual violence.
  • The project offers women, men and children & their supporters, an opportunity to have a voice surrounding issues of sexual abuse and assault.
  • Survivors express themselves artistically by creating personally designed T-shirts in a variety of media, which are displayed together publicly. 
  • For many survivors, the Clothesline Project offers an important step on their individual healing journey, by “breaking the silence”.

How did the Clothesline Project begin?

  • The original Clothesline Project began in 1990 when members of the Cape Cod Women's Agenda hung a clothesline across the village green in Hyannis, Massachusetts with 31 shirts designed by survivors of assault, rape and incest. Women viewing the clothesline came forward to create shirts of their own and the line just kept growing.
  • Since that first display the Project has grown to 500 - 600 Clothesline Projects nationally and internationally, with an estimated 50,000-60,000 shirts. The Clothesline Project has become a distinctive resource for healing from violence and creating social change. Lines have been displayed at schools, universities, State Houses, shopping malls, churches and women's events. The first National Display took place April 8 & 9, 1995 in Washington D.C. in conjunction with NOW’s Rally For Women's Lives.

History of the Vera House Clothesline Project

  • The former Rape Crisis Center of Syracuse, Inc. clinical staff organized a local Clothesline Project after witnessing the Clothesline Project in Albany, NY in 1993, which took place on Legislative Education Day and was sponsored by NYS Coalition Against Sexual Assault.
  • After consultation with the Cape Cod Women's Agenda, the first local project was launched at the Carousel Center Sky Deck in Syracuse. It included shirts created by RCC clients, Vera House clients, Syracuse University Rape Center clients and shirts from the RCC/Domestic Violence Programs in Cayuga, Madison and Oswego Counties. Survivors, family members and friends were invited to create T-shirts as well as to view the impressive number of shirts strung around the perimeter of the Sky Deck.
  • In the year 2000, the Clothesline Project was coordinated by the Volunteer Program at RCC, and it continued under their direction until 2004 when a committee consisting of RCC staff, clients, family and friends brought renewed energy, creativity and commitment to the project.
  • Following the merger of RCC and Vera House in January of 2005, the Clothesline Project continues to be a vital effort of the new agency’s commitment to client service and community outreach. 2005 Honorary Chair, author Cathy Brochu, brought her powerful message of personal transformation from victim to survivor to activist, to an appreciative audience at Carousel Center in April, surrounded by a moving display of over 500 T-shirts.
  • It continues to be a heartfelt commitment on the part of our local Clothesline Project participants, volunteers and Vera House staff, that the courageous survivors of sexual assault and violence will always have a warm and supportive forum in which to explore the power of their unique voices, and that our community have the opportunity to bear witness to this extraordinary, enlightening and empowering process.

For more information about the Clothesline Project, click HERE to contact the project coordinator.

Clothesline Project Photo Gallery

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