International Day for the Elimination of Violence against Women is on 25 November, raising awareness of this devastating issue and addressing ways to end violence. It also marks the 16 Days of Activism against Gender-Based Violence campaign which calls for the prevention and elimination of violence against women and girls. The global themes for 2022 is “UNITE! Activism to end violence against women and girls” and “Ending Femicide.”
Violence against women and girls is widespread and remains largely unreported due to the stigma and shame surrounding it. According to the United Nations, violence can manifest itself in physical, sexual and psychological forms, including:
Intimate partner violence
Sexual violence and harassment
Female genital mutilation
In order to help stop violence against women from the ground up, it’s important that we are calling out sexist behaviour and promoting gender equality in all areas of our lives. There’s certain actions we can take to make sure that all voices are being heard.
Listen to their stories
When survivors are sharing their stories, it’s extremely important to believe and listen to them. Allow a safe space so they can be heard and let them know that you are there for them. Call out victim blaming and acknowledge that the perpetrator is the sole reason for assault and must bear the responsibility alone. Respectfully listen and don’t just listen to respond, seek out guidance from other professional resources who may be able to help.
Learn the signs
Learn the signs of abuse so you can be aware of when it happens. If you’re concerned about a loved one who may be in an unsafe situation, review these signs and learn about how you can best support them.
Educate the younger generations
Start conversations with the younger generations and point out common stereotypes that are shown in the media or at schools, and let them know it’s okay to be different. Talk about consent and accountability and educate them on the broader issues that are being faced in the world.
You can get involved by posting about it on social media, listening to podcasts and virtual panel discussions or participating in the reimagined Walk Against Family Violence. Click here for more information on the International Day for the Elimination of Violence against Women.
If you or someone you love is in an unsafe situation, reach out for help. There are numerous support services available, including 1800RESPECT, Services Australia and Mission Australia. You can also contact a Sonder team member 24/7, who will help provide advice and support.
More support services
Lifeline - 13 11 14
If you have any questions or need extra support, we're here to help you anytime, in any language. Simply start a chat with us via the home screen of the Sonder app.
Information sourced from: United Nations, UN Women, 16 Days Campaign and Safe and Equal.
Image credit: Becca Tapert on Unsplash
All content is created and published for informational purposes only. It is not intended to be a substitute for professional advice. Always seek the guidance of a qualified health professional.