In The News


Private Violence” Opens Human Rights Watch Film Festival

private violence human rights watch

“Private Violence” was honored to be asked to open the Human Rights Watch Film Festival June 13, 2014 at the Film Society of Lincoln Center’s Walter Reade Theater.  Screening followed by discussion with filmmaker Cynthia Hill, executive producer Gloria Steinem, and film subjects Kit Gruelle and Deanna Walters Moderated by Liesl Gerntholtz, director Women’s Rights division, Human Rights Watch.  SEE MORE HERE….


WIVP Partner Works with NFL To Address Gender Violence


NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell

As a result of the uproar over player Ray Rice’s domestic violence incident recently,  The NFL will increase its penalties for players involved in future domestic violence cases, Commissioner Roger Goodell informed team owners in a letter Thursday. The toughened penalties came after the league and Goodell received widespread criticism for the two-game suspension given to Baltimore Ravens running back Ray Rice for his involvement in a domestic violence case earlier this year.

In the room with the commissioner were WIVP longtime partner Esta Soler, of Futures without Violence, Tony Porter of a Call to Men, Kim Gandy of the National Network to End Domestic Violence, and others.

See more here… here….


Swedish Delegation Studies  WIVP’s Four Year “Sioux City Project”.

team sweden

Members of “Team Sweden”

Fifteen Swedish authorities from national agencies on education, law enforcement, public health and social care, youth affairs, and domestic and sexual violence coalitions traveled to Sioux City in early April to participate in the annual Mentors In Violence Prevention annual high school  summit April 7, 2014

MVP Summit 2014

MVP Summit 2014

The delegation also learned more about the bullying and gender violence prevention strategies and programming in the “Sioux City Project” – a four-year violence prevention initiative designed by the Waitt Institute for Violence Prevention in partnership with Sioux City’s public schools and numerous community organizations and service providers.

Two hundred high school sophomores and juniors from Sioux City’s three public high schools (North, East and West)  received mentoring and leadership training at the summit  in active bystander education, intervention strategies and facilitation skills. The MVP model teaches students to safely and effectively intervene and respond to acts of bullying, dating abuse, rumors and gossip, cyberbullying, and other forms of gender violence and abuse when they hear or observe it happening.

“We are pleased to partner with the Sioux City schools and their community prevention partners to support the teaching and learning associated with bullying and gender violence prevention in high schools,” said Alan Heisterkamp, CVP co-director and event organizer. “Preventing all forms of bullying and abuse is, and always has been, a community issue – whether it’s here in Iowa, the U.S. or in Sweden.”


“Private Violence” Honored with True Life Award at True/False Film Fest


WIVP supported “Private Violence” was honored to receive the True False Film Festival “True Life” Award.

In 2007, the True/False Film Fest attempted to highlight and address this reality by establishing the True Life Fund, which raises and awards money to one or more on-camera subjects of a film screened during each year’s festival. “Private Violence,” a documentary about domestic violence, will be highlighted as this year’s True Life Fund recipient film.

“Private Violence” attempts to dispel the myths of domestic violence and portray its realities by examining the common social refrain “Why don’t they just leave?” frequently posed about victims of domestic violence. The film examines these issues by documenting the experiences of Deanna Walters, who is attempting to deal with and move forward from domestic violence she faced at the hands of her ex-husband, and Kit Gruelle, an advocate for victims of domestic abuse, who also survived domestic violence.

Gruelle and Walters, who will attend screenings of the film at this year’s festival along with the film’s director, Cynthia Hill, will receive the money raised by the True Life Fund.

“I’m thrilled about the award,” Gruelle says. “I’m still not exactly sure what it means yet or anything like that, but I think it’s great that our film and, more importantly, this issue that affects 25 percent of women — and I think that’s a conservative number — are getting this kind of attention.”

For Hill, the award is gratifying because it provides both recognition for the work of her subjects and a sense of confirmation that her film is having an effect.

For more in depth, go here…

An interesting note is that WIVP supported documentary “Bully” won the same award in 2012.

"Bully" receiving the award in 2012.

“Bully” receiving the award in 2012.

“Private Violence” Premieres at Sundance Film Festival January 19th

kit cindy cyn red carpet sundance edited

Advocate Kit Gruelle, Cindy Waitt, and director Cynthia Hill January 19th in Park City, Utah

Sundance Institute announced today the films selected for the U.S. and World Cinema Dramatic and Documentary Competitions section of the 2014 Sundance Film Festival, January 16-26. Among the 16 films announced for the U.S. Documentary Competition at the festival was WIVP-supported “Private Violence.”

The January 19, 2014 showing at Sundance will be the film’s US and worldwide premiere. The date also coincides with the 20th anniversary of the Violence Against Women Act.

Robert Redford, President & Founder of Sundance Institute said, “That the Festival has evolved and grown as it has over the past 30 years is a credit to both our audiences and our artists, who continue to find ways to take risks and open our minds to the power of story. This year’s films and artists promise to do the same.”

Keri Putnam, Executive Director of Sundance Institute, said, “We are energized by the rich diversity of voices, characters and places represented in the films selected for our 2014 Sundance Film Festival. Independent filmmakers continue to engage us with stories from worlds both intimately familiar and unknown.” >> Read More >>

“Bully” Nominated for PUMA Impact Award

Susan Sarandon announcing "Bully" impact statement in New York November 13th.

Susan Sarandon announcing “Bully” impact statement in New York November 13th.

Private Violence” Documentary Chosen for Chicago Good Pitch

good pitch with screen

Private Violence team and supporters October 22nd in Chicago

Fledgling Fund Selects “Private Violence”

Sundance Institute Selects “Private Violence” for Grant

“Private Violence” Chosen for ‘I Believe in You’ Grant

Producers Guild of America to Honor “Bully” with Special Award

Alan Heisterkamp on Guns, Violence, Masculinity and Newtown (The Huffington Post)

“Bully” Makes Short List for Academy Awards

Huffington Post-Cindy Waitt/Alan Heisterkamp

Sioux City after “Bully”-Des Moines Register

MVP featured on KTIV news

Sioux City Project earns international praise

UNI Center for Violence Prevention hosts “Bully” screening with Lee Hirsch and Cynthia Lowen

LA’s Nokia Center Host to 6,000+ Students for “Bully” Screening

National men’s movement leaders gather for “The Y Factor”

WIVP-supported film project on ABC’s 20/20