Fall 2010, Issue#24
-BROCHURE (inside)
"Unite to End Violence Against Women: Leadership of the Corporate Sector in Ending Violence Against Women and Girls"

The UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon has set a target of raising a minimum of $100
to ending violence against women and girls.

end_of_violence2 end_of_violence
International Day for the Eliminate of Violence Against Women - United Nations, November 23, 2010.

"Stopping violence against women begins with empowering women."
- Michelle BACHELET, Executive Director of UN Women
"The United States alone loses nearly $1 billion in productivity each year due to violence against women,
along with 7.9 million workdays."
- Margery Kraus, the Chief Executive Officer of APCO Worldwide.

Hightlights and Photos by:
Sirin CENGIZALP, Lightmillennium.Org

On November 23, 2010 conference about ending violence against women took place in the United Nations Headquarters at New York City. Speaking ahead of the International Day for the Eliminate of Violence Against Women, which was November 25th, speakers emphasized the importance of working with governments, private donors and other partners in order to build safe places for girls and establish a culture of respect for women. In addition, the United Nations Trust Fund to End Violence Against Women launched its annual global Call for Proposal for programs that support country-level efforts to end violence against women and girls. As a campaign creator, the UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon has set a target of raising a minimum of $100 million for the UN Trust Fund by 2015 in order to accomplish the commitments to ending violence against women and girls.

ban_ki_moon ju_ju_chang
The UN Secretary General Ban Ki-MOON
Moderator Juju CHANG, ABC News.

As a first speaker, the UN Secretary-General Mr. Ban Ki-moon emphasized the importance of taking an action in this campaign. He stated that real progress could be made in stopping violence, especially with more and more people now aware and taking action. Furthermore, he focused on the key role of the UN Trust Fund to End Violence Against Women and how the fund offered more than $20 million in grants, but could meet less than 2 percent of requests for support.

Ban Ki-moon talked about his recent meetings with numbers of CEOs who are creative, company presidents who are committed and care about the safety of world’s women and girls. They are finding new ways to stop the violence against women. For instance, the pages of fashion magazines are great tools to create the interactions between cosmetics people and their clients. Mr. Secretary General and his team welcome what these energies and ideas are doing to advance the course of Secretary General’s Unite to End Violence Against Women Campaign. The program is complex and widely spread; but the solutions are within reach. There are simple steps we can take to get counseling to victims. To raise awareness that violence is a crime, and it should always be punished.

Ambassador Joseph GODDARD
Michelle BACHELET, Executive Director of UN Women, and Former President of Chile

"Violence against women cannot be justified on any grounds, yet it persists."

The Ambassador and the Permanent Representative of Barbados to the United Nations Mr. Joseph Goddard opened his speech by showing his gratitude to the Secretary General for his strong leadership in support of the empowerment of women in general and in particular for his UNITE campaign to eliminate violence against women. Mr. Goddard has been asked to share with the audience a Caribbean perspective on this important issue. He talked about how violence against women is a global issue, which pervades every level of society irrespective of social and economic factors such as class, race, income level or level of education. It constitutes a violation of the human rights and fundamental freedoms of women. Violence against women cannot be justified on any grounds, yet it persists. The perpetration of violence against women also takes place in Caribbean societies. These societies, forged and shaped by the violence and uneven power relations of slavery and colonialism, are still battling today the legacy of these ills.

Barbados is proud to have hosted the Caribbean launch of the Secretary-General’s UNITE campaign on 11-12 October 2010. The theme of the conference was “Strengthening Accountability and Changing Culture to end Violence against Women in the Caribbean”. The meeting focused on deepening the understanding of the causes and consequences of, and responses to, gender-based violence in the Caribbean. Particular emphasis was placed on building a consensus on the reform of law and social policy, and setting concrete goals, within the context of the Secretary-General’ campaign, that will bring meaningful change to he lives of women and girls in the Caribbean. At the national level, Barbados has declared a zero policy on domestic violence. To this end, Barbados has implemented a number of programs aimed at reducing and eventually eradicating domestic violence where it exists. These programs are based on three pillars: the elimination of inequalities between men and women; the provision of services for victims and offenders; and the provision of technical and financial assistance to women’s groups to engage in education and provide support services. A shelter for abused women was established and funded by the government of Barbados and is managed by the NGO community. The Bureau of Gender Affairs of Barbados, in collaboration with international partners and UNIFEM, has developed a Domestic Violence Data Collection Protocol as the official instrument for the collection of data on domestic violence. The training of law-enforcement officers in intervention in cases of domestic abuse is a crucial dimension in tackling domestic violence. For that reason, a module on domestic violence, based on the Commonwealth Secretariat’s manual “Guidelines for Police Training on Violence against Women and Child Sex Abuse”, is now included in the training program for new officers. Media campaigns – involving public service announcements and other forms of media collaboration – as well as cultural events, are being used to build public awareness of the prevalence of gender-based violence and to reinforce social and cultural attitudes consistent with the values of human rights and gender equality.

"Stopping violence against women begins with empowering women."

Michelle Bachelet, the Executive Director of UN Women, and Former President of Chile (11 March 2006 to 11 March 2010), talked about how most of the women are exposed to violence by the ones who are closest to them. For instance, intimate partners, family members, colleagues as well as people they have never met. It takes places in rich and poor countries. It takes place in women’s daily life, and during the war or peacetime.

UN Women will focus on encouraging young men and boys to join the campaign in taking a stand. The UN system is also helping countries to gather information and exchange ideas, and the Secretary-General’s database on violence against women established last year is to show the for information of what member states are doing on this issue.

This week the global program was the safe cities. Free of Violence Against Women and Girls are being launched in New Delhi, India. This program aimed to develop a successful model on how to live free from in a sexual harassment and sexual violence in public places for worldwide replication.

Ms. Bachelet highlighted the success of a growing body of actions around the world to stop violence against women, but underscored that political, social and financial support must sustain momentum. She added that UN Women will mobilize forces at the global level, and help develop national capacities to eliminate the violence against women now. A new, scaled-up UN organization to promote gender equality, UN Women will start operations in January 2011. Ms. Bachelet emphasized that while there had been significant progress in encouraging national policies aimed at reducing violence against women, many gaps remained.

More than 100 countries had no specific laws against domestic violence, and up to 70 percent of women worldwide had experienced physical or sexual violence from men during their lifetime. In addition, violence by affecting women’s ability to succeed in school, in the workplace and in public life, also undercut vital efforts to achieve equality on a wider level. Gains in combating violence could not be achieved without strong partnerships and sufficient funding. That’s why the 2010 theme for the International Day, “Building Partnerships to Combat Violence Against Women”, underscored the need for strong funding and multisectoral expertise. According to Ms. Bachelet, agreeing that female role models had an essential part to play in eradicating deeply rooted violence against women such as women police officers and soldiers. It is a showcase that women are strong, and that women are capable. Last but not least, Ms. Bachelet stated that “around the world cultural changes were needed to stop women from being looked at as second-class citizens, and we need to create a culture of respect”.

debi_nova margery_kraus
Debi NOVA, Songwriter and multi instrumentalist
Margery KRAUS, Chief Executive Officer of APCO Worldwide

"Violence against women includes, sexual, physical, psychological and economical abuse."

A singer, songwriter and multi instrumentalist, Debi Nova started her speech by emphasizing that the topic of “violence against women” has great personal importance for her. From the first moment Ms. Nova heard about Secretary-General’s campaign, she knew that she has to land her voice to help eradicate this problem. The UNITE Campaign is a global call for an immediate action in all levels for social mobilization in every community and for increase of all funds at national levels in order to prevent and respond to all forms of violence against women and girls. Violence against women is a problem that exists in every society, and up to 76 percent of women in the world having experience violence most of them within intimate relationships. Violence against women includes, sexual, physical, psychological and economical abuse. Most of the women who experienced violence prefer to keep these experiences to themselves and accept a life of pain and frustration. It is vital for these women to have others around them that can help them and to know that they can resource to people around them in order to escape this prison. Ms. Nova emphasized the importance of communicate in order to break the vicious cycle of violence. This summer Ms. Nova worked at UNITE campaign in Mexico at the World Youth Conference 2010 and the slogan was “in our generation no more violence against women”. At the end of the conference Ms. Nova urged participants at the event and elsewhere in the United States to do their part by texting the word UNITE to 27722. Each text results in $10 going to the Trust Fund. One text will provide materials to educate community activists in Uganda, ten texts will provide counseling to 63 survivors of sexual violence in Cameroon, five hundred texts will help six trafficked girls acquire housing and life skills training in Tajikistan.

"The United States alone loses nearly $1 billion in productivity each year due to violence against women, along with 7.9 million workdays."

Margery Kraus, the Chief Executive Officer of APCO Worldwide, emphasized her passion about this topic because she is the first generation American, and she feels like she has wonderful opportunity because other people took a stand so she can seat here. And now she feels like it’s her responsibility and business to take a stand so others can follow. And she is the mother of three children, grandmother of ten, six girls four boys so if I don’t take this responsibility all look me in the face everyday.

Violence against women affects every aspect of women because it is just not the physical abuse; it also affects the person’s self-esteem and confidence to do things, earn a living, and affects the capacity to move forward.

Businesses should care about this issue because it is the moral obligation. Margery Kraus outlined the moral imperative for taking action to stop violence, along with the business case. Ms. Kraus stated that the United States alone loses nearly $1 billion in productivity each year due to violence against women, along with 7.9 million workdays. Businesses training staff to have mutual respect for each other are one way of carrying new behaviors into society. The International Day for the Elimination of Violence against Women comes at the start of the annual 16 Days of Activism Against Gender Violence Campaign, which mobilizes civil society and other advocates around the world.

sharon_d'agostinoe shupe_makashinyi
Sharon D’AGOSTINO, Vice President of Corporate Contributions for Johnson & Johnson.
Shupe MAKASHINYI, UN Trust Fund grantee from the international women’s rights organization called “Equality Now” in Zambia.

Sharon D’Agostino, Vice President of Corporate Contributions for Johnson & Johnson, announced a new two-year commitment to the UN Trust Fund centered on collecting evidence of which strategies work best in stopping violence. Ms. D’Agostino described a corporate credo that focuses first on what’s good for men, women and communities, with a healthy bottom line following from there. Partnership with the private sector, in particular, could offer both an avenue of funding and knowledge in key areas. With a more than 100-year history of philanthropy, Johnson & Johnson was experienced in creating community partnerships on the ground. It has also been working with the United Nations Trust Fund to End Violence against Women since 2005. Besides simple funding, corporate partners could bring leadership in strategic thoughts, as well as a degree of sustainability through their relatively high tolerance for financial risk. Responding to a specific question about the benefits of private funding, D’Agostino said, “When we fund risk, we believe we are funding innovation”.

Shupe Makashinyi, UN Trust Fund grantee from the international women’s rights organization called “Equality Now” in Zambia, described winning a landmark legal case around the rape of a girl by her teacher that is now inspiring more survivors to come forward and seek justice. As an organization, Ms. Makashinyi wants to challenge society as a whole to understand that violence against women and girls is not acceptable in any form and wants to dream of the day when Zambian girls are safe at home, at school and in their communities. According to Ms. Makashinyi there was much to be done on the ground with dollars from the Trust Fund to End Violence against Women. Along with a coalition of Zambian groups, Equality Now worked on multisectoral projects aimed at empowering girls and establishing safe spaces for them, as well as training lawyers, paralegals and health workers to respond to the needs of girls facing violence. Ms. Makashinyi and other participants also discussed the important function of training girls and women to become role models in their communities. Responding to a question about corporate sector-funded road map programs, which trained and hired female employees, she said that her organization worked to train young women to work with both the private sector and the government itself.


Highlights and Photos by:

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