Julie S. Lalonde is an Ottawa-based Canadian activist and educator on sexism and violence against women. She has a particular focus on stalking. On the latter, sadly, she speaks from personal experience.
To raise awareness and help others who are (or may one day be) stalked by an ex-partner or other, Ms. Lalonde has just launched the “Outside of the Shadows” project with a video campaign on social media.
[CONTENT WARNING: This video includes graphic descriptions of stalking. Please exercise self-care]
Ms. Lalonde works with various organizations dedicated to ending sexual violence, engaging bystanders and building communities of support. She has won numerous awards for her work, including the Governor General’s Award in Commemoration of the Persons Case, which honours Canadians who advance gender equality.
I follow Julie S. Lalonde on Twitter, and there I asked her there about Outside of the Shadows. “I was stalked for over a decade while also simultaneously being an advocate for survivors of violence,” she told me. “It wasn’t safe for me to talk about until my abuser died. Tired of the silence around the issue, I crowdsourced some money and hired an artist I admired to help me create the resource I needed when I was suffering.”
That artist, who keeps her identity anonymous, is Montreal-based Ambivalently Yours. Her aim is “to highlight the potential for political resistance and emotional empathy that exist within conflicting emotions.”
Ambivalently Yours created animation by sequencing hundreds of original hand-drawings, made especially for this project. The voice is that of Julie S. Lalonde telling her own story.
Funding for the video came from online donors, with free studio time from Ottawa station CHUO-FM.
You can follow the project at outsideoftheshadows.ca.