The Ministry of Human Services and Social Security will today (November 25) join the rest of the world in kicking off 16 Days of Activism against Gender-based Violence under the theme, “Orange the World: End Violence against Women Now!”
It is an annual campaign that begins on International Day for the Elimination of Violence against Women (November 25) and runs until December 10, being Human Rights Day. It was started by activists at the inaugural Women’s Global Leadership Institute in 1991 and continues to be coordinated each year by the Center for Women’s Global Leadership.
Used as an organising strategy by individuals and organisations around the world to call for the prevention and elimination of violence against women and girls, the initiative has the full support of subject minister, Dr. Vindhya Persaud, who has organised for several important and impactful activities to be conducted during this period.
“It is an important period for the ministry annually. Following on from where we started last year, it is my intention that there be tangible events which make an impact on communities. The slant of all our activities will be reflective of the ministry’s slogan ‘Enough with the Violence,’” Dr. Persaud commented.
She explained that as part of the community engagement, a series of panel discussions will be held in several regions across the country with presentations by persons in the legal, health and social work fields, survivours and advocates. The audience will comprise survivours, perpetrators, persons experiencing abuse and persons willing to be advocates.
As these discussions roll out, officers from the ministry will simultaneously seize the opportunity to provide information about services available at the Ministry. Dr Persaud pointed out, “Sometimes people are not aware of the avenues of support that exist within the Ministry. Officers will be on hand to provide this kind of information.”
Another highlight of the 16 Days of Activism would be the launching of ‘I CAN’ (Community Advocate Network) by the ministry – a brand new programme that will encourage a robust and vibrant network across the country where people encourage each other, help persons to seek help, and report issues to the ministry in a timely way so that action can be taken.
Among the other initiatives by the ministry during this period would be the launch of Paint for Purpose, the launch of the ‘Orange the World’ filter on Facebook, and a moment of silence, pledge and candle lighting for those who died due to domestic violence, media events, book launches and much more.
The ministry will also be lit up in orange from tomorrow in observance of the period. A calendar of events will be available in the media.
The ministry will further use this period to amplify the work of the 914 hotline number as an important part of its fight against domestic violence.
Details about these and other activities during the 16 Days of Activism can be found on the ministry’s Facebook page.