THE BLOG
11/02/2015 05:04 GMT | Updated 12/04/2015 06:59 BST

Love Revolution

There is no question that being a grandmother of five youngsters has spurred me onto getting so involved as an activist passionate to stop the sexual abuse against children and vulnerable young people that is so endemic throughout all areas of UK society.

I have been a long term friend and supporter of the extraordinary Eve Ensler, author of Vagina Monologues, who had done so much to draw attention and stop the sexual violence to women and girls, across the world.

When she launched One Billion Rising three years ago to draw attention to all the ways that women and girls get sexually abused across the world, I got myself more and more involved and committed to stand up, dance and yell that this situation has to change. Now every year on February 14th hundreds of thousands of women and men in more than 200 countries around the globe gather to rise, dance and demand changes in their societies.

And somehow I have found myself as UK co-ordinator, working flat out to bring together in Marble Arch on February 14th a large gathering of women, men and young people, performers, actors, poets, dancers, activists and politicians to drum, dance, protest and discuss how we can create our own Love Revolution and rebuild a society based on healthy love and healthy relationships.

Since getting involved in this very shadowy area of our society, I have understood that power is the common denominator through all the sick and bullying groups of mostly men who abuse their positions- whether gang leaders, politicians, heads of children's care homes, TV presenters, local taxi drivers and many others now being named from institutions and organisations that represent authority in our repressed society.

What we seem to be missing is love, healthy love, healthy relationships and a way to openly express affection and connection. That is why we are naming our London event Love Revolution when we get together in Central London's Marble Arch at noon on February 14th.

We are going to be looking at how we can collectively, as a local, a national and a global community protect our young and our vulnerable. We are using music and art to celebrate the best of us and to spur our revolution on to positive energy and connection with each other.

I believe our species will evolve when we are loving and protecting each other - not using children as fodder for the basest of inclinations. Power can corrupt all of us if we allow it to, and warps our fundamental human influence to love, move and nurture each other.

We want the next Parliament to take this whole situation a lot more seriously and between us create a radical shift to end the epidemic of abuse towards women and children. According to research by The Office of the Children's Commission, one in twenty children under eighteen are sexually abused in the UK, 90 per cent by people they know.

With the tagline, 'Drum, dance and rise', UK politicians, performers, survivors of abuse, and people of all ages who want to end sexual violence towards women and children, will join hundreds of countries around the world on the same day through a combination of artistic events, community-based initiatives and rallies.

"One in three women across the planet will be raped in her lifetime. That's one billion girls", said Eve Ensler, the founder of One Billion Rising. "Every February, we rise to show the world what one billion looks like and shine a light on the rampant impunity and injustice that survivors often face."

New research conducted by UCL for Kids Company, shows the scale of the issue for some of the vulnerable adolescents supported by the charity in the UK, which found that they are 13 times more likely than other young people of a similar age to have experienced severe to extreme levels of sexual abuse. They were also more than four times more likely to have experienced severe to extreme levels of physical abuse.

On February 14th, we are also urging the public to challenge any unhealthy sexual situations they are either involved with or are aware of: young people need to be aware that they have choice in their lives."

And, although the situation is alarming, I am adamant that the UK's contribution to the One Billion Rising revolution will be positive. I sincerely hope this is the beginning of a movement - a Love Revolution - which restores the real meaning of love and places healthy relationships at the centre of our society. I would like Valentine's Day to go back to being a celebration of love and not just an excuse for more consumerism.