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A glimpse of just some of our 16 Days Activities around the World
Members around the globe have been engaging in the 16 Days of Activism Against Gender Based Violence this year like never before!
Members have also been posting and sharing their campaign actions on their various social media platforms from countries as far afield as Ghana to the USA, from Ireland to Anguilla, ensuring that this crucial campaign goes truly viral. Here are just some of the activities that have been taking place over the past 16 days. They are only a tip of the iceberg.
Tampa, Florida: Tampa Bay Mothers' Union gave a presentation about human trafficking. Tampa is third in the USA for human trafficking. Three guest speakers, one of which included a human trafficking survivor, gave presentations which educated the audience about this issue and ways they can help their local community.
Derby Cathedral: Derby Diocese held a vigil in Derby Cathedral on 30th November
A lady who was visiting city for the day said she was grateful that they were raising awareness and how much she appreciated it as her Mum had been a victim of domestic abuse. Quite a few of the people who dropped into the Cathedral joined in and looked at the prayer stations and Elm Foundation table. Many people were ‘touched’ by what was happening. “It was well worth doing,” said Carol Johnston, Derby Mothers’ Union’s Diocesan Secretary.
Members across All Ireland were extremely busy with talks, exhibitions, vigils, prayer walks and breakfasts. Members in Derry and Raphoe spoke to over 700 pupils across the area about their support for 16 Days. All Ireland President Phyllis Grothier highlighted the importance of the 16 Days of Activism. She said, “This campaign is at the core of what Mothers’ Union is all about as we reach out to families who don’t enjoy all that should be in a family relationship.” “We seek to stand with people who are in trouble and let them know that we care, to let them know that there is another life out there,” she continued.
Ghana: Members marched through the streets shouting “GBV is BAD and must end now!” They are also organised programmes and activities for children who have been affected by Gender Based Violence.
Scotland: Mothers’ Union in Scotland is a member of the Scottish Interfaith Group on Domestic Abuse and has been raising awareness through an exhibition of shoes entitled “Souls of Our Shoes” where each pair in the exhibition tells the story of a person affected by domestic abuse or with statements from faith communities and politicians. The group has recently launched a film called "Walking Through Domestic Abuse” where survivors (women, men and children) talk about living through domestic abuse. View it here
Anguilla: 16 Days of Activism commenced with a prayer vigil at St Mary's Anglican Church in conjunction with the Mothers' Union, the Anguilla National Council of Women ANCW and the Gender Affairs Unit.
Members attended prayers for 16 Days in the Middlesex Chapel at St Paul’s Cathedral.
Norwich: An Advent Service At St Margaret's Old Catton which contained prayers to mark the 16 Days Campaign where members were invited to hang prayers in the form of hands for survivors of abuse following a sermon based on the stories of Nobel Peace Prize winners Denis Mukwege from Congo and Nadia Murad from Iraq who risked their lives to work with victims of Sexual violence in war zones.
Durham Diocese members did a prayer walk on 30 November. They walked from the statue of St Cuthbert’s into Market Square and then into the Cathedral for quiet prayer. At each stop along the way they said prayers and handed out fliers to members of the public. “We were well supported by Trustees, members and the public who were really interested especially those older people who told us of their mothers who had been members a long time ago. We had some very interesting conversations. We are preparing for 2019!” Said Kathleen Wilson, Diocesan President of Durham.
Find out what Salisbury Diocese did during the 16 Days from this article on the diocesan website.
A prayer vigil was held outside Winchester Cathedral on 25 November. Members gave out over 100 leaflets and nearly as many candles. The team in Brockenhurst were stopped by many people who shared their own stories and experiences of domestic abuse.
The Archbishop of Burundi led a march in honour of 16 Days. Read all about it here