The International Violence Against Women Act: Sign The Petition

The International Rescue Commitee would like help to pass The International Violence Against Women Act; put forward to Congress, to empower women to claim their most fundamental human rights. The devastation in Haiti seems to have faded from the media as a cause for concern, however as The IRC point out in their short video, help is needed now just as much as it was and is certainly not limited to one geographical area.

In the aftermath of conflict and disaster, women and girls can and do suffer violence, exploitation and abuse. But, with the necessary resources for medical care, counseling, economic opportunities and education, women and girls can win in the fight against violence.

Urge Congressional leaders by signing this petition to pass this legislation to ensure women and girls have the necessary resources to win in the fight against violence.

By: Dearbhaile Kitt, 18.03.2010 | Comments (0)
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Empowering Women Awards

Avon and Women’s Aid, in association with Marie Claire Magazine, are launching the first ever Empowering Women’s Awards to celebrate the women who work tirelessly every day to end domestic abuse. These can be women who have survived domestic violence and gone on to help others do the same, or campaigners who are committed to to making a difference. But where do Avon and Women’s Aid find such inspiring women? That’s where you come in!

There are three awards – Survivor of the Year, Campaigner of the Year, and Grass Roots Hero (who will win £10,000 for the charity project of their choice) – that will be won by worthy women that you nominate. You can nominate yourself, or any woman that you think deserves to be recognised for her achievements. The closing date for nominations is the 30th of April 2010. All finalists will be invited to an exclusive awards ceremony in London where nominations will be judged by Sarah Brown, Reese Withersoon, Trish Halpin, Tana Ramsey and Anna Segatti.

Get nominating now!

By: Sarah Barnes, 15.03.2010 | Comments (0)
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Million Women Rise Tomorrow!

Just a reminder that tomorrow sees thousands of women marching through central London to call for an end to violence against women. Coinciding with International Women’s Day, Million Women Rise (MWR) will be marching for a properly government funded plan, backed by the commitment of all political parties, to enable women to live free from the threat of male violence.  Further, the march will demand International Women’s Day to be declared a national public holiday in recognition of women’s contributions to all areas of UK society.

The women only event will mark the 100th anniversary of International Women’s Day and will be the third annual march. Last year, attendees reached over the 5,000 mark and as a result of the success, MWR national co-ordinator Sabrina Qureshi was invited, by the then Home Secretary Jacqui Smith, to a join a consultation on violence against women and girls. However, with women still experiencing violence at the hands of men there are still plenty of reasons to march. 

Marchers are invited to meet at 12 noon on Park Lane opposite Hyde Park’s Speakers Corner before heading to Trafalger Square, via Oxford Street and Regent’s Street, to gather for the rally at 3pm. Hope to see you there!

By: Dearbhaile Kitt, 05.03.2010 | Comments (0)
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Million Women Rise needs you!

On the 6th March this year the annual Million Women Rise march will be taking place, calling all women together  to bring domestic violence to an end. As usual, MWR will be coinciding with International Woman’s Day, and what better way to show your love for yourself and your sisters than marching?

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By: Yasmin Eshref, 22.02.2010 | Comments (0)
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4 Ways To Speak Out.

I know how much I’ve been enjoying the festive season, stuffing my face with mince pies and mulling wine without a care… I even donned a multitude of knitwear to play in the snow this week, and I’m not ashamed to admit it warmed the cockles of my heart. I hope that all our readers are enjoying Christmas time just as much as I have been but am well aware that for a lot of women, Christmas is a time of fear, isolation and violence.

Refuge

For a lot of us, Christmas conjures up images of home, and of family. For many women however these words imply danger and harm, in the form of domestic violence. (more…)

By: Yasmin Eshref, 21.12.2009 | Comments (0)
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‘My Strength’ Posters

My Strength

I came across the My Strength website via the comments on this piece on the F Word. My Strength is a Californian initiative (though it has now spread further), aimed at men, that strives to promote youth empowerment, gender equality and healthy relationships.

I found the My Strength campaign posters (available on the website) to be really refreshing pieces of media. Not only are the sentiments quite unique (in terms of how the media usually responds to and reports rape and sexual violence) but I also think the images are a bit special too. It’s not often that we see a male/female couple where the male meets our eye and the female gazes into the distance (isn’t it usually the other way round?) AND it’s not often that we see a male/male couple full stop (especially one that acknowledges the sexual relationship between the two).

Aaah it’s like an invigorating breath of fresh air! Why can’t we see more campaigns like this?

My Strength

By: Sarah Barnes, 05.12.2009 | Comments (0)
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We Reclaimed The Night! Part 2

Reclaim The Night - Hall crowd

Following on from our long, wet and happy march everyone slowly filtered into the Camden Centre. Whilst we had been marching it had been difficult to see how many of us marchers there were, but packed into the centre the greatness of our number was an awesome sight!

Reclaim The Night London on Stage

Admittedly, it was lovely to have an opportunity to sit down and dry off (with hot Caribbean food, home made cakes and a licensed bar all making this period of the evening even more enjoyable) but that wasn’t the only reason for us gathering! The vast group of tired marchers were eager to reflect on the night and listen to some emotive and inspiring speakers.

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By: Sarah Barnes, 29.11.2009 | Comments (0)
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Reclaim The Night in Leeds Tomorrow!

Reclaim The Night Leeds

To find out more about the march, including the ‘Reclaim the Dancefloor’ after-party at the wonderful Common Place, head to the website!

By: Sarah Barnes, 27.11.2009 | Comments (0)
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Remembering victims of violence by candle-light

National Gallery Gathering

Last night I went along to Trafalgar Square to join many other women (representing Million Women Rise, Women in Black, London Feminist Network, Object, the Women and Girls’ Network, Roshni and, of course, all representing themselves) gathered in remembrance of all women who have suffered male violence. We were there to mark the United Nations Elimination of Violence Against Women Day, share our stories and hope for a future free from violence.

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By: Sarah Barnes, 26.11.2009 | Comments (0)
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Men! Wear a White Ribbon today!

White Ribbon Campaign

As well as being the United Nations Elimination of Violence Against Women Day, today is also White Ribbon Day – a day set up by the White Ribbon Campaign. Each year the campaign urges men and boys to wear a white ribbon for one week, starting today, to mark the International Day for the Eradication of Violence Against Women. Wearing a white ribbon acts as a personal pledge to never commit, condone or remain silent about violence against women.

The campaign is an interesting and much needed one because it takes the onus of responsibility surrounding male violence against women away from women and sees men as part of the solution. Here is some information from the campaign’s educational material;

Why violence against women is also a men’s issue:

  • *Men are the main perpetrators of violence
  • *The lives of partners, friends, sisters and daughters of men are damaged by violence and abuse
  • *Men can speak out and intervene when male friends and relatives insult or attack women
  • *Men can help create a culture where the behaviour of a minority, who treat women and girls with contempt or violence, becomes unacceptable
  • *Men can examine their own behaviour and consider changes which will create a world based upon gender equality

    10 things men can do to help prevent male violence against women:

    1. 1. Realise that gender violence is a men’s issue that affects women we care about
    2. 2. Never remain silent – confront abusive behaviour of other men
    3. 3. Understand how our own attitudes and actions may perpetuate sexism and violence – work towards changing them
    4. 4. Offer help and support if we suspect a woman is being threatened
    5. 5. Respect women and treat them as equals
    6. 6. Ally with women who are working to end all forms of gender violence
    7. 7. Speak out against homophobia
    8. 8. Educate ourselves about masculinity, gender inequality and the root causes of gender violence
    9. 9. Mentor young men about ways to be men that do not involve degrading or abusing women
    10. 10. Refuse to purchase any magazines, videos or music that portrays women in a degrading or violent manner

    Find out more on the White Ribbon Campaign website

    By: Sarah Barnes, 25.11.2009 | Comments (0)
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