The Zonta Club of Melbourne, USA, District 11, participated in a variety of activities during the 16 Days of Activism Against Gender-Based Violence.
Inspired by other Zonta clubs around the world that lit up buildings and monuments in orange, club members asked business owners to light up their storefronts in orange to show their support for the Zonta Says NO to Violence Against Women campaign. They passed out fliers and were featured in the local newspaper. The club had a great response to this initiative.
The club also took out billboards along the I-95 Corridor from 25 November through 10 December. Interstate 95 is the main Interstate Highway on the East Coast of the U.S., running from Route 1 in Miami, Florida, to the Houlton–Woodstock Border Crossing with New Brunswick, Canada, and is used by millions of people daily.
On 24 November, the club participated in the Space Coast Basket Brigade, which provided 3,346 local families with everything they need to prepare a traditional Thanksgiving meal. Club members volunteered in their orange Zonta Says NO t-shirts, using the opportunity to spread awareness of the importance of ending violence against women.
The club also involved high school students in its efforts. Members of the Melbourne High School Z Club arranged for their school’s electronic billboard to encourage students to wear orange and coordinated a presentation with Sheriff Wayne Ivey and a human trafficking survivor to speak to the students on 10 December.
The Zonta Club of Canberra Breakfast Inc in Australia, District 24, held a somber service this week to memorialize the 52 women and eight men who died from intimate partner violence.
A garland of orange flowers shaped the word NO, the color a reminder of the fifth UN sustainable development goal of equality. December 10 also marks the conclusion of 16 Days of Activism against Gender-Based Violence, under the theme, “Orange the World: Generation Equality Stands against Rape!”
Continue reading about the impactful event.
In Ghana, 21% of girls are married before their 18th birthday.
The Zonta Club of Tema, District 18, partnered with the United Nations Population Fund (UNFPA) for a billboard to bring awareness to child marriage during the 16 Days of Activism Against Gender-Based Violence.
Naana Aboagye Asare, the club’s president, said drastic measures must be taken by stakeholders to fight against child marriage, which is destroying girls’ potentials.
“Statistics on child marriage in Ghana [were] alarming and needed to be [nipped] in the bud,” Asare said.
UNFPA Ghana Gender Programmes Analyst, Selina Owusu, who led in the unveiling of the billboard, said child marriage was a serious national issue that needs to be addressed immediately.
She called on all stakeholders and Ghanaians to join in the fight against child marriage and gender-based violence in the country.
Continue reading about the initiative here.
The Zonta Club of Pampanga in the Philippines, District 17—in partnership with Angeles City and SM City Clark—convened to for their Zonta Says NO to Violence against women and children activity.
The women’s desk from the local government units, private companies’ corporate social responsibility department heads, different foundations, non-governmental organizations and students were gathered and raised the flags to join Zonta in their quest to eliminate violence.
The club also recognized three Centennial Champion Awardees and three Centennial Community Awardees for their exemplary contribution to 2019 projects of Zonta.
The highlight of the event is the dance interpretation of “Break the Silence, No to Violence” performed by four groups from different schools in Pampanga. The performances had intense messages on the issue of violence against women. Also included in the show is the Aeta children’s dance interpretation on the issue of child marriage that is commonly practiced in their community.
Did you know that consensual marriage is part of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights? Child marriage is a violation of human rights that must be stopped. Let us end child marriage together.
The Zonta Club of Cradle-Coast, Australia, District 23, has put shoes and personal stories into more than 20 shops on the Coast as a way to bring awareness to gender-based violence.
Each shoe, which could be a high heel, flat, boot or sandal, had a survivor’s story with it.
“We should always challenge the ‘myth’ that the way a woman dresses somehow suggests ‘asking for it’ or ‘inviting’ discrimination, violence or abuse,” club secretary Karli Franks said.
The displays are part of the Walk in My Shoes project, started by Zonta clubs in South Australia.
Women survivors of male violence wrote their stories, which were then published in a booklet.
“We hope these stories inspire those experiencing domestic violence or supporting someone who is, to seek help and support. Our aim is to raise awareness of the fact that abuse and violence can happen to anyone in our community; it doesn’t discriminate.”
What would you do if a girl you know is one of the 650 million women and girls who were married as children? By 2030, nearly 1 billion girls and women will have been married as children. Help us stop this number from rising.
Did you know that because of child marriage, we all lose out? When the potential one-third of girls in developing nations is cut short, everyone is affected.
The decline in child marriage is still slow. To end child marriage in Nepal by 2020, an accelerated effort is required. Zonta supports the Global Programme to End Child Marriage, which is working to end this harmful practice in 12 countries by promoting the rights of adolescent girls to avert marriage and pregnancy and enabling them to achieve their aspirations through education and alternative pathways. Join us in ending all violence against women and girls.
Did you know that education can be one of the most powerful tools to enable girls to avoid child marriage and fulfill their potential? Through the Let Us Learn project, Zonta is creating opportunities for vulnerable and excluded children—particularly girls—in Madagascar with UNICEF USA. Learn more at https://foundation.zonta.org/Let-Us-Learn-Madagascar.