At the dawn of Human Rights Day, this year’s 16 Days of Activism have come to an end. For over two weeks, our social media channels turned bright orange. The global Orange the World campaign was supported by numerous organisations and individuals, contributing to the awareness about violence against girls and women. But 16 days are not enough to end gender-based violence. We need 365 days of activism!
The 16 Days of Activism start each year on 25 November, the International Day for the Elimination of Violence against Women. According to Sima Bahous, UN Women Executive Director, the campaign has led to important steps in the past years to protect the rights of women and girls.
A shadow pandemic
On the other hand, the COVID-19 pandemic and other crises have increased violence against women and girls. Often this goes unnoticed by their friends and loved ones. It is a shadow pandemic, raging in rich and poor countries alike, of different sizes and shapes. This shadow pandemic asks for responses at global and local levels.
Youth speak against gender-based violence
Cordaid staff and partners work to prevent and eliminate gender-based violence, for example in Iraq, Bangladesh and Burundi. During this year’s 16 Days of Activism, on 3 and 4 December, Cordaid Iraq organised a youth engagement workshop.
The participants, both men and women of different backgrounds, discussed how to fight injustice, such as gender-based violence, in their personal lives and communities.
Watch this short video to learn more about the young leadership workshop in Iraq: