ZI District 31 raises funds through advocacy

Zonta International District 31 organized a bazaar and a fund-raising dinner on 9 March in the southern city of Kaohsiung to mark Zonta Rose Day. With the support of District 31 club members and the general public, 1 million Taiwan dollars (roughly US$33,000) and US$13,520 of donations were collected for advocacy programs fighting violence against women both in Taiwan and overseas.

The Rose Day events, centered on the Zonta Says NO campaign, were designed to promote Zonta’s worldwide long-time dedication to combating violence against women, protecting women’s rights and safety and elevating women’s status. District 31 Governor Huey-Er Lian said, “On this special day, the Rose Day, we call for equal rights for men and women and better protection for women against violence and abuse. Women should be treated with respect, and we ask men to be more considerate, understanding, and extend help to the opposite sex whenever it is needed.”

The bazaar was co-sponsored by Kaohsiung City Government with support from six women’s rights groups led by the Garden of Hope Foundation. Echoing “Walk a Mile in Her Shoes”, 50 men of different ages were invited to wear high-heel shoes and walk through the bazaar for a symbolic 100 meters, carrying placards which read: “Rose Day, Zonta Says NO”, “End violence. Justice without sex discrimination”, “Friendlier work place for single mothers”, and “More women for policy-making”.

Some 250 District 31 members, many bringing their families and friends, attended the fund-raising dinner which was highlighted by an auction of vases, paintings and other art works donated by Zontians.

Around 400,000 Taiwan dollars (US$15,000) was collected. Total donations in local currency , including those from the auction, by District 31 clubs, individuals and Zonta supporters amounted to around one million dollars. One third of the local currency donation will go to ZI’s Rose Fund and the rest will be used for local programs assisting underprivileged women and District 31’s advocacy projects. A separate, combined US$13,520 donation to Rose Fund was also made by clubs in the District.

Zonta International Governor Huey-Er Lian (right) and District 31 Treasurer Shu-Lan Chiu (left) pose with oil painting donated to fundraising auction.

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