Every year from 25 November (The International Day for the Elimination of Violence Against Women) until 10 December (Human Rights Day) the UN marks The 16 Days of Activism Against Gender-Based Violence. This campaign has as one of its slogans ‘orange the globe!’ or ‘orange the world!’ with the colour orange signifying a brighter future, free of violence.
The Shiloh Project has in prior years used the 16 Days to profile action and research towards the elimination of violence against vulnerable persons and groups. This year we have collaborated with SAS Rights, a community-interest group founded and led by long-term Shiloh supporter Saima Afzal.
During the Covid-19 pandemic SAS Rights has generated a range of campaigns to help those enduring or recovering from coercion, abuse, social isolation, poverty, or illness. These campaigns have included both informal online drop-ins and more organised virtual chat-groups (e.g. on such themes as Islamophobia and gender-based violence), as well as exercise classes, counselling, and emergency safeguarding. SAS is particularly geared at addressing problems before they get to a stage where emergency intervention is necessary. With this mind, SAS foregrounds community- and peace-building, discussion and sharing of ideas, nurturing empathy and understanding, and facilitating safety plans and access to reliable information.
It is important for this important work to continue, even after the 16 Days conclude for another year. We would like your help and support to make this happen.
Please take a look at our poster. The poster features images created by our wonderful in-house artist Elaine Sultana. Every person depicted here is an activist and supporter of human rights, working towards the elimination of gender-based violence. You will find in this poster, too, all of our Shiloh Project directors, past and present.
We are wearing masks bearing slogans for two reasons. First, in the present Covid-19 pandemic wearing masks protects others. The masks signify our collective efforts to protect the most vulnerable in our community, including those suffering domestic and gender-based and sexual violence. Second, a covering of the mouth with a slogan signifies that we will not keep silent. Breaking the silence and shame around domestic and gender-based and sexual violence is an important first step towards confronting and then eliminating these scourges.
Would you like to get involved and add your image to our mosaic of supporters?
If you are able to offer a donation towards the cost of creating your image, please visit the SAS Rights funding site: https://www.gofundme.com/f/sas-rights-against-genderbased-violence?utm_medium=copy_link&utm_source=customer&utm_campaign=p_lico+share-sheet
We suggest a donation of £15-£20, or whatever you can afford. Of this £10 will go to the artist, Elaine Sultana, and the rest towards the important work of SAS Rights. Just send an image of you wearing a mask (be creative with your background!) and a slogan that captures your commitment to end gender-based violence to: firstname.lastname@example.org
You can take part as an individual, or as a representative of an organisation. You will receive your image as an online attachment and be added to our mosaic. If you cannot pay anything but still want to show your support by adding your image, please still do get in touch. Your solidarity is important to us.
If you need help, please contact SAS Rights. Saima is based in Lancashire (UK) but she also has connections throughout the UK and beyond. She is all about finding solutions! Please contact her: email@example.com
Please look out for some of our short videos that show our part in orange-ing the world as we take forward the momentum of the 16 Days. Each of us may sometimes feel small and ineffectual but all of us together can do much to eliminate gender-based and other forms of violence – one step at a time.