Research indicating the value of mobilizing community members - to establish a more holistic approach to the prevention of and response to sexual assault and domestic violence - highlights an untapped opportunity to engage beauty establishments as allies in anti-violence advocacy.
Vanede creates a platform that facilitates this partnership to leverage beauty in an empowering and impactful way.
With only 344 out of every 1,000 sexual assaults reported to police, Vanede’s mission is to create a world where sexual and domestic violence response doesn’t only occur in the ER, police stations, or the therapist’s office, but one where response occurs everywhere that women are.
A Safe Space
“I was struck by how comfortable strangers were sharing their experiences. This speaks to Vanede’s ability to create safe spaces for survivors and allies”.
MEET THE FOUNDER
NNEKA OBIEKWE, MPH
Vanede was born from Nneka’s personal story as a beauty-obsessed, sexual assault intolerant, perpetrator-condemning, advocate for survivors. It’s one that began 10 years ago at Syracuse University where as a student, she planned and facilitated Syracuse University’s first ever student-led sexual violence prevention workshop.
In 2015, she completed a Masters of Public Heath (MPH) at Emory University where she focused on the ways to leverage the socio-ecological framework to inform effective sexual assault response strategies. Currently, Nneka works as a healthcare consultant by day, and a weekend sexual assault hotline advocate by night. In her spare time, she freelances as a independent beauty consultant for luxury brands.
As a beauty sales rep, she quickly found that the skills she uses to promote beauty products to women were similar to that of the skills used to promote healing in survivors on the hotline, and that the common thread between the two is in the encouragement of unabashed self-indulgence, self-care and self-love in women who need it. As the founder of Vanede, Nneka hopes to transform every beauty maven into a fearless agent for change.