Sidmouth dancer instructor to lead flashmob protest against violence towards women

Johanna Morgan

Johanna Morgan - Credit: Kyle Baker Photography

Johanna Morgan will begin the sequence in Exeter as part of international One Billion Rising campaign

A Sidmouth dance instructor will lead a flashmob protest against the abuse and exploitation of women this weekend.

Zumba teacher Johanna Morgan is set to start the sequence in the centre of Exeter on Saturday (February 18), as part of an international campaign to raise awareness of and stamp out domestic violence.

Men, women and children are all invited to join in the dance, which will take place in Princesshay’s Bedford Square at approximately 2.30pm, then again at 3.15pm.

The flashmob is being organised by the city’s Stop Abuse for Everyone (SAFE) charity as part of the international One Billion Rising campaign - described as the biggest mass action to end men’s violence against women in history.

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The campaign started in 2012 in response to the shocking statistic that one in three females in the world – amounting to one billion - will be beaten or raped during her lifetime.

Johanna, of JM DanceFit, said of the ‘very important and meaningful’ event: “We’ve been learning the flashmob moves in our zumba classes and are hoping that additional members of the community will come together and take part.

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“Alone we can do so little, together we can do so much.”

The dance instructor will begin the choreographed moves and will gradually be joined by dozens more dancers performing to the protest song Break the Chain.

The performance will mark a first for SAFE, which has supported the international campaign in previous years, but never organised anything on this scale.

The charity says the aim is not only to support the international campaign, but also to raise awareness of the alarming levels of male violence against women in Devon and the UK.

Dancers are asked to wear red in a show of solidarity. There will be a practice session at St Sidwell’s Community Centre, Exeter, from 12.30pm to 2pm.

Or, participants can learn the dance at home - a breakdown of the steps can be found on YouTube: com/watch? v=mRU1xmBwUeA.

The event will also feature speakers and the chance to find out more about SAFE’s work, as well of that of Devon Rape Crisis, which is also supporting the campaign.

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