In the news: A letter to the Editor: Ending gender-Based Violence

As a part of 16 days of Activism Against Gender-based Violence, on Saturday, Dec. 5, the Zonta Club of Cape Girardeau will participate in two events to bring awareness to domestic violence. First, we encourage everyone to wear or display orange to draw attention to our campaign. Secondly, we invite the community to stand with us in solidarity at 1 p.m. at Liberty Corner of Capaha Park to be a part of Zonta Says NO to Violence Against Women.

Violence against women and girls is one of the most pervasive human rights violations in our world; since the outbreak of COVID-19, evidence has shown that all types of gender-based violence have escalated. Globally, one in three women experience physical or sexual violence inflicted mostly from an intimate partner.

Today, in an analysis of homicide data, our state ranks No. 2 in rates of murder of women by their intimate partners. Enough is enough. Women cannot, and should not have to, fight for their physical and emotional safety. We must unite communities in the global appeal to all governments to end violence against women once and for all.

The Zonta Club of Cape Girardeau urges you help us make positive changes in our communities to stop cyberviolence against women and girls, to put an end to sexual harassment in the workplace, and to speak out when there is no one to speak for a victim. We cannot solve this issue alone; please join us in saying no.

A letter to the editor of the Southeast Missourian from Cheryl Mothes, advocacy chair, Zonta Club of Cape Girardeau (

In the news: Zonta Club of Bradford Zonta’s 16 Days of Activism begins Wednesday

“The Zonta Club of Bradford collected items Tuesday for different service projects. Pictured are wrapped gifts for The ELF Fund’s Christmas gift program, along with collected food for a project where Zontians will donate to the Friendship Table and local food pantries this holiday season. On Wednesday, the Club will begin its 16 Days of Activism campaign, too.

The Zonta Club of Bradford invites the community along as it advocates for women’s rights during its 16 Days of Activism campaign.

The campaign begins Wednesday — Domestic Violence Awareness Day — and ends on Human Rights Day on Dec. 10.

Local Zontian Lisa Chapman talked about the importance of the annual campaign, which launched in 2012. “Violence against women is the most pervasive human rights violation. It knows no national or cultural barriers; happens at home, school, in both public and private places,” Chapman shared. “It may consist of psychological, sexual, or physical abuse often manifested by rape, trafficking, assault, child marriage and in some countries, genital mutilation.”

She said that the Bradford Chapter will run an informative Facebook campaign for those 16 days.

“Each day we will post an interesting anecdote, video, or quote from a local person, Zonta member, or fact resource,” Chapman explained. “For instance, on opening day we announce our campaign and invite all in the community to shine an orange porch light to symbolize support for ending violence against women. Subsequent posts will speak to this goal or any of our mission’s goals from people who work closely with this problem.

“Of particular interest is the impact the pandemic has produced,” she added.

Chapman explained that officers from local departments will talk about the recent increase in domestic violence during the pandemic. Also set to share is St. Marys City Councilwoman Margie Brown, who will talk about the importance of having female representatives in government.

The community can show their support by sharing the Zonta Club of Bradford’s daily posts so they can reach as many people as possible. Search for the “Zonta Club of Bradford, Pennsylvania” Facebook page to find the group’s posts.”

From: The Bradford Era (

In the news: Cebu Zonta 2: End VAW

SINCE 1991, advocates for women’s rights all over the world have been observing the 16 Days of Activism against Gender-Based Violence from Nov. 25 (the International Day for the Elimination of Violence Against Women) to Dec. 10 (the Human Rights Day).

The 16 Days of Activism is an organizing strategy by individuals and organizations around the world to call for the prevention and elimination of violence against women and girls.

In the Philippines for this year, the national campaign has been extended until Dec. 12, which is observed as the International Day Against Trafficking by virtue of Proclamation 1172 signed in 2006 by former President Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo. The campaign is now known in the country as “the 18-Day campaign to End Violence Against Women.”

The Philippine campaign aims to raise awareness about gender-based violence against women as a human rights issue at the local, national, regional and international levels and to strengthen local work around gender-based violence against women (GBV-VAW).

Ending violence

This year’s campaign highlights the role and essence of the barangay, as part of a VAW-free community, in consonance with the recurring theme “VAW-free community starts with Me.” Aside from capacitating VAW desk officers and other barangay officials on how to handle VAW/GBV cases, the campaign reiterates everyone’s commitment and contributions to ending VAW and it calls on the general public to make a personal commitment to end violence against women and children.

In keeping with this vital landmark and worldwide campaign, Zonta Club of Cebu II, through the Abay sa Kahayag Committee, has organized a series of activities and advocacy initiatives to highlight the perils and serious consequences of GBV. Most of the endeavors focused on strengthening local mechanisms and building on the required competencies of barangay officials to fully and effectively mandate and implement the directives obligated by Republic Act (RA) 11313, or the Safe Spaces Act, more popularly known as the Bawal Bastos Law — a legal game — changer with Sen. Rissa Hontiveros as principal sponsor and author of the law that aims at bolstering the country’s legal framework in the area of sexual and gender-based harassment.

Safe spaces

The Safe Spaces Act addresses existing gaps and issues on equality, security and safety of both women and men in private and public spaces. It is also intended to expand the scope of RA 7877, or the Anti-Sexual Harassment Act of 1995. RA 11313 seeks to prevent gender-based sexual harassment from occurring in streets, public places, online workplaces and educational and training institutions regardless of the motive for committing such action or remarks. It penalizes acts such as cursing, wolf-whistling, catcalling, leering and intrusive gazing, taunting, unwanted invitations, misogynistic, transphobic, homophobic, sexist slurs and persistent unwanted comments on one’s appearance and other such acts. The salient points of the Safe Spaces Act will be discussed at a webinar with a presentation by lawyer Miles Esquivel and the activity will conclude with a motivating and impactful message from Hontiveros.

Other webinars

The 18-day campaign organized by Zonta Club of Cebu II will also feature a webinar on “The Intersecting Influences of Technology on Human Trafficking” with special attention on the methods that cyber technology increases the ease with which traffickers can locate, recruit, coerce and control their victims. Lawyer Katrina Legarda will also present strategies how these same technologies that are shaping and facilitating trafficking and smuggling crimes and creating additional barriers to their detection and investigation can be harnessed to prevent, detect, intervene and ultimately thwart these crimes.

Another webinar will feature personalities who will share their stories and experiences of harassment either as victims or witnesses and how they dealt with the aftermath of the encounters. This will be followed by a very informational presentation by Dr. Rhodora Masilang Bucoy, former associate professor of University of the Philippines Cebu and past chairperson of the Philippine Commission on Women (2016-2020). Bucoy is also a recognized gender and development consultant on techniques and strategies for creating safe and secure physical, virtual or emotional spaces for all.

Enlisting support

With these series of activities, Zonta Club of Cebu II hopes to enlist the support of active participants in the fight to eradicate violence against women and children; to expand accountability and collective responsibility; to include all government units, women’s groups, legal entities and nongovernment institutions; to harness technology, social media, journalism, business and activism; to draw attention to the many ways violence against women and children affects the lives of all people in all communities in the Philippines and around the world.

From SunStar (

Zonta Club of Kankaanpaa creates display to raise awareness of gender-based violence

Every year, approximately 20 women will die as a result of gender-based violence in Finland. The Zonta Club of Kankaanpaa had the opportunity to create a display in three business windows in the city center to build awareness of the issue. Orange scarves, candles and lights connected the display to the worldwide Zonta Says NO to Violence Against Women campaign. The display will run from 25 November to 10 December 2020.

Zonta Club of the New Territories organizes series of virtual advocacy talks

Zonta Club of the New Territories, Hong Kong organized Advocacy Talks for their Zonta Says NO to Violence Against Women Campaign on the theme: Challenges for Women in the New Era

For one talk, the club hosted speakers with sound exposure in women issues in Hong Kong, namely: Prof. Cecilia Chan, University of Hong Kong Sisi Liu, Federation of Women Centre Lisa Moore, Research and Advocacy Director, The Women Foundation.

Club president Anna Lee opened the session addressing the importance of the theme to fellow Zontians. Advocacy Committee Co-Chairs Teresa Lin and Betty Fu expressed their heartfelt gratitude to the speakers for bringing new perspective and important insight to members, and thanked members for taking part in the seminar.

The club also hosted on 19 November “Women Issues in Hong Kong” and on 28 November “Women of Intimate Partner Violence.” During the club’s November business meeting, the club held a video presentation on the “No to Violence in Teenage Dating” conference, as a follow-up to the club’s 2019-2020 advocacy project.

Zonta Club Burg Staufenberg-Giessen raises awareness of violence against women

From the 25th November to the end of December, a city bus is running through Giessen, with two big orange traffic boards with “Zonta says NO – stop violence against women!” and the phone numbers of the regional women`s houses, thanks to the Zonta Club Burg Staufenberg-Giessen, Germany. The mayor of the city, the women`s officer and regional press were also present to open the 2020 campaign.

Zonta Club of Charlevoix join hands to raise awareness of domestic violence

Every year, from 25 November through 10 December, Zonta Club of Charlevoix, Michigan members join hands with Zontians around the world to raise awareness of domestic violence. On 25 November, from 11:45 am to 12:15 pm, Zonta Charlevoix members stood in silence with local law enforcement (Charlevoix City Police Chief Gerard Doan and Charlevoix County Sheriff Chuck Vondra) to lend credence to Zonta Charlevoix’s 2020 campaign ‘TIED TOGETHER THROUGH VIOLENCE’. Club members held fast to an orange silk scarf (with knots every six feet to promote social distancing), with orange scarves tied around their necks, and orange masks covering their faces. Zonta Charlevoix says NO to Violence Against Women. With a Mayoral Proclamation issued 16 November 2020 by City of Charlevoix Mayor Luther Kurtz, 10 December 2020 has been officially declared as “END VIOLENCE AGAINST WOMEN DAY IN CHARLEVOIX”.

Zonta Club of Brampton-Caledon engages leaders to support social media campaign during pandemic lockdown in Ontario

Due to being in lockdown through 21 December to curb the spread of COVID-19, the Zonta Club of Brampton-Caledon in Canada had to change their plans to engage in the Zonta Says NO to Violence Against Women campaign.

Canceling their poster campaign because of the lockdown, the club is posting on their social media accounts daily, focusing on gender-based violence and human trafficking.

Local leaders such as Caldeon Mayor Allan Thompson, Brampton Mayor Patrick Brown and the Peel Regional Police have participated in the social media campaign.