#16Days: Welcome!

By Beth Woroniuk, WPSN-C Coordinator (@bethottawa)

Nov 24th intro blog picWelcome to WPSN-C’s special online series for #16Days of Activism Against Gender-Based Violence!

In Canada and around the world organizations, activists and institutions will use these 16 days to raise awareness, build political support for change, and identify concrete ways to go forward. This year’s official theme is “Together We Can End GBV in Education!” but the discussions are much broader.

2017 appears to a watershed year. Still stunned by the Trump election and the Ghomeshi verdict, activists were both reeling and then revitalized at the start of year. The women’s march in January generated energy. Discussions on sexual harassment, revelations from Hollywood and the #metoo campaign broke into the headlines and daily discussions. Stories from the Inquiry on Missing and Murdered Indigenous Women and Girls saddened and angered. The federal government announced a new Strategy to Prevent and Address Gender-Based Violence.

Over the next two weeks, members of our Network are holding multiple events.

KAIROS is organizing a tour of 2 women activists from the South Sudan Council of Churches.

The GRAN advocacy network and the Canadian Federation of University Women (CFUW) are combining to ‘orange’ buildings and organize a panel in Toronto on November 25th.

Nobel Women’s Initiative, Peace Brigades International, InterPares, and The Match Fund have an event on November 29, Nevertheless She Persisted: An evening of powerful stories from Women Human Rights Defenders in Colombia and Honduras.

As well, Nobel Women’s Initiative will have an online campaign profiling women activists from all over the world to learn more about the vital work they are doing for social justice. Follow the campaign on their 16 Days blog or subscribe to have profiles delivered daily to your inbox.

Women in International Security Canada has taken on a coordinating role. Check out their site for more resources and events.

In order to highlight issues of concern to Network members, we’re launching a special online series of blogs and contributions. Watch this space for news and commentary over the next ten days. We’ll be featuring the following topics.

Nov 29th Day of Women’s Human Rights Defenders: One Way to Build Your Resilience

Dec 1st World AIDS Day: Addressing Stigma and Discrimination in Combating HIV/AIDS

Dec 3rd Persons with Disabilities Day: Inclusive Feminist Lens

Dec 6th Anniversary of the Montreal Massacre: From Graves to Great; collective action builds feminist resistance in DRC

Dec 9th Day of Dignity for Victims of Genocide: Post-genocide Rwanda poses obstacles to women’s psychological health and well-being

Dec 10th International Human Rights Day: Video Interview with the founders of the South Sudan Women’s Foundation

Feel free to enter into the discussions. Tweet at/with us, follow along on Facebook and engage. Many thanks to the authors of each input, to Rebecca Boyce (Cuso International and WPSN-C Steering Committee member) and Christine Izere (WPSN-C intern) for coordinating the series and to our dedicated webmistress Monique Cuillerier (World Federalist Movement – Canada).

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