What is the 16 Days of Activism Against Gender-Based Violence Campaign?
Beginning with the International Day for the Elimination of Violence Against Women on 25 November and culminating with Human Rights Day on 10 December, the 16 Days of Activism Against Gender-Based Violence (GBV) Campaign is an annual movement for the international community to center its efforts on reducing and eliminating violence against women and girls around the world. Since 1991, the 16 Days Campaign has united the voices of millions of girls and women to raise GBV awareness, eradicate GBV in all forms and demand equal protection for girls and women from GBV.
This year the theme, Together We Can End GBV in Education!, is relevant to GWI and like-missioned NGOs as the campaign is focused on intense awareness-raising in the human rights framework. The goal of the GWI 2017 is, alongside our National Federations and Associations (NFAs), to increase awareness of and advocate for the elimination of all forms of gender-based violence in education.
How does Gender-Based Violence affect girls’ education?
The intersection of education and violence against girls is particularly relevant as schools are environments where children and adolescents learn and develop social and behavioral norms. A specific form of GBV, school-related gender-based violence (SRGBV) directly affects girls in their quest for quality education. Often stemming from deeply-rooted cultural norms and practices surrounding gender, girls are particularly vulnerable to SRGBV, which most often takes the form of psychological bullying, cyber-bullying, and sexual violence. When girls experience SRGBV, they no longer feel safe in their educational setting, causing them to lose focus on their academics or drop out of school altogether. Access to quality education is a fundamental human right, and eliminating school-related, and all forms of, GBV will contribute to the promotion of women’s human rights.
How can we address and eliminate GBV worldwide?
The primary step towards eliminating GBV globally is to draw attention to and spread awareness about the issue and its destabilizes the safety, dignity, overall health status, and human rights of the millions of women and girls who experience it. This is the goal of the 16 Days of Activism Campaign by aiming to build on success while highlighting the work that still needs to be done. GWI correspondingly celebrates progress that has been made and extraordinary girls around the world who have fought back against GBV. GWI has created an Action Toolkit, you will find several resources to share with your members and local community; spreading the word about the need to address GBV. Together we can end GBV in education!