31st of March
9 Am – 1 Pm
The United Nations General Assembly has designated November 25 as the International Day for the Elimination of Violence Against Women The premise of the day is to raise awareness of the fact that women around the world are subject to rape, domestic violence and other forms of violence; furthermore, one of the aims of the day is to highlight that the scale and true nature of the issue is often hidden. For 2014, the official Theme framed by the UN Secretary-General’s campaign UNiTE to End Violence against Women, is Orange your Neighborhood.
Historically, the date is based on the date of the 1960 assassination of the three Mirabal sisters, political activists in the Dominican Republic; the killings were ordered by Dominican dictator Rafael Trujillo (1930–1961). In 1981, activists at the Latin American and Caribbean Feminist Encuentros marked November 25 as a day to combat and raise awareness of violence against women more broadly; on December 17, 1999, the date received its official United Nations (UN) resolution.
The UN and the Inter-Parliamentary Union have encouraged governments, international organizations and NGOs to organize activities to support the day as an international observance. For example, UN Women (the United Nations Entity for Gender Equality and the Empowerment of Women) observes the day each year and offers suggestions for other organizations to observe it. For 2014, the focus is on how violence cuts across all 12 of the critical areas of concern of the Beijing Declaration and Platform for Action, which turns 20 next year.
In her message for 25 November 2014, UN Women Executive Director Phumzile Mlambo-Ngcuka said:
‘’In 1995, close to 20 years ago, 189 governments came together in Beijing. They adopted a Platform for Action that spelled out key strategies to end violence against women, empower women, and achieve gender equality. … The promises from 20 years ago are still valid today. Together we must make 2015 the year that marks the beginning of the end of gender inequality. Now is the time for action.’’
In his message on the day in 2013, UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon stated:
‘’I welcome the chorus of voices calling for an end to the violence that affects an estimated one in three women in her lifetime. I applaud leaders who are helping to enact and enforce laws and change mindsets. And I pay tribute to all those heroes around the world who help victims to heal and to become agents of change.’’