PLANNING is underway for this year’s 16 Days of Activism Against Gender-Based Violence campaign.
This global campaign is dedicated to raising awareness and gaining wider support to end gender-based violence.
The theme for this year’s campaign ‘If iumi garem peace insaed famili, bae iumi garem peace insaed kantri’, highlights that all forms of gender-based violence, whether they happen in the home or in public spaces, are damaging to national peace.
Evidence shows that two out of three women in the Solomon Islands experience violence in their lifetime and 38% of women report their first sexual encounter is forced.
These staggering rates of violence are some of the highest in the Pacific and the consequences impact everyone in the Solomon Islands.
Each year the 16 Days of Activism Against Gender Based Violence campaign runs from the 25th November, the International Day for the Elimination of Gender-Based Violence, to the 10th of December, Human Rights Day.
These dates were chosen to highlight that acts of gender-based violence are a violation of human rights and eliminating all forms of gender based violence is a human rights issue.
The 16 Days Campaign is made up of a number of events happening around the world. Since 1991, over 4,114 organisations in approximately 172 countries have participated in the 16 Days Campaign.
In the Solomon Islands the Ministry of Women, Youth, Children and Family Affairs (MWYCFA) are leading a 16 Days of Activism Organising Committee made up of representatives from ten organisations committed to ending gender-based violence.
Organisations including Australian Aid, Christian Care Centre, Correctional Services Solomon Islands, Family Support Centre, MWYCFA, New Zealand High Commission, Oxfam Australia, People with Disability Solomon Islands, Transparency Solomon Islands, UN Women, Vois blong Mere Solomons and World Vision will be hosting and supporting events during the campaign.
These events will provide opportunities for conversations about the causes of gender-based violence in Solomon Islands and solutions to ending the human rights abuses that occur inside the home.
The events will also enable people to come together, network, and unite in the campaign to end all forms of gender based violence.
The 16 Days of Activism campaign will be launched on Monday 25th November, the International Day for the Elimination of Gender-Based Violence, with a parade from the Multipurpose Hall to the National Art Gallery.
The 16 Days of Activism organising committee invites everybody – women, men, youth, girls and boys- to join this parade and show their commitment to ending gender based violence in Solomon Islands.
Specific details of events throughout the 16 Days of Activism will be announced soon.
Look and listen for updates in the newspaper and on the radio or contact, Sarah Buka (MWYCFA) on 23544 or 7595444.
Similarly, if your organisation, business or community group would like to host an event or activity to help recognise the 16 Days of Activism, please contact Mrs Buka.