November 25 will signal the start of the 16 Days of Activism Against Gender-Based Violence Campaign.
In Barbados, UN Resident Coordinator Dr Godfrey Xuereb, UN Women Representative Alison McLean and Luis Maia, Head of Cooperation of the European Union to Barbados, the Eastern Caribbean States, the OECS and CARICOM/CARIFORUM, will deliver remarks during the launch at the Barbados Museum and Historical Society.
The launch will showcase the artistic work of Barbadian youth, through the conflict resolution programme entitled ‘Talk Sense’, which seeks to reduce and prevent conflict escalating to violence.
The Talk Sense Movement, emerged through the collaboration of senior spoken word artists, Derron Sandy of Trinidad and Tobago and Adrian Green of Barbados, at Carifesta VI.
Sandy shared the concept of the school based Two Cents movement which utilizes drama and spoken word as mechanism to enable children and youth to discuss issues of domestic and gender based violence.
Green accepted the offer to bring the project to Barbadian schools. After training sessions for Barbadian spoken word artistes and poets facilitated by the Institute for Gender and Development Studies, St Augustine Campus, the poets worked with Barbadian school children. The work showcased at this event is a sample of what the students produced in just about a six-week period.
The launch will be situated within the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) Gallery which is hosted at the same venue.
Over the past 30 years, the international community has increasingly recognized violence against women as a public health problem, a violation of human rights, and a barrier to economic development.
In 1993, the United Nations (UN) General Assembly formally recognized women’s right to live lives free of violence in the Declaration on the Elimination of Violence against Women, as did the Inter-American Convention on the Prevention, Punishment and Eradication of Violence against Women.
The launch of the 16 Days of Activism and the recognition of the need to eliminate violence against women during the SDGs Gallery is significant.
It is understood that women and girls, everywhere, must have equal rights and opportunity, and be able to live lives free of violence and discrimination.
Women’s equality and empowerment is one of the 17 Sustainable Development Goals, but also integral to all dimensions of inclusive and sustainable development. In short, all the SDGs depend on the achievement of Goal 5- Gender Equality.
Unfortunately, violence against women and girls (VAWG) is one of the most common forms of insecurity facing citizens in the Caribbean. With statistics illustrating that approximately one in three women have or will experience some form of physical or sexual violence mostly by an intimate partner at some point in their lives.