Violence against women is a grave public health issue that has received recent attention with cases surfacing around the world, particularly in India, Bangladesh and Turkey.
All over the world, women are subjected to physical and mental abuse every day. A study by the World Health Organization of women ages 15 to 49 in 10 countries found:
- 71% of women in Ethiopia reported physical and/or sexual violence by an intimate partner in their lifetime
- 0.3%-11.5% of women reported experiencing sexual violence by a non-partner since the age of 15 years
- The first sexual experience for many women was reported as forced – 17% in rural Tanzania, 24% in rural Peru, and 30% in rural Bangladesh
These numbers are unacceptable. Women are leaders in families and communities; contributors to the economy; and strong agents of change around the world. They have a message and a voice that must be heard. In acknowledgement of this and by bringing data and social awareness together, a powerful new global movement launched 15 years ago called V-Day.
V-Day is a global activist movement that seeks to end violence against women and girls. It is a day that promotes creative events to increase awareness, raise money, and support existing anti-violence organizations. This year for its 15th anniversary, V-Day has launched its most ambitious campaign to date: ONE BILLION RISING. V-day.org states, “The concept of the campaign is simple. If you take into account the statistic that over 1 billion women on this planet will be impacted by violence. On 2.14.13 we are inviting ONE BILLION women and those who love them to WALK OUT, DANCE, RISE UP, and DEMAND an end to this violence. V-Day wants the world to see our collective strength, our numbers, our solidarity across borders.”
The Hunger Project is actively participating in this movement around the world. In New York, we will dance in Union Square. In London we will bake cakes. In India we will march.
Start your own event or join one but we urge you get involved. Don’t let this opportunity pass you by – these women deserve to be heard.
Let us know in the comments how YOU are rising and check back here next week for pictures from our events around the world!
- UPDATE: See how we rose up around the world!
- Join or start an event in your area
- Send a Hunger Project e-card to your loved ones for Valentine’s Day
Post by THP Communications Intern, Krisha Patel. Krisha attends Rutgers University where she is studying Public Health and Biological Sciences. She is currently active with the American Diabetes Association, the American Red Cross, the Foundation for International Medical Relief of Children and her university’s disability services.