On Thanksgiving week, we typically look forward to events that involve food. And sales. And hopefully sales on food. However, this year, Black Friday shares a date with a nobler cause: International Day Against Violence Against Women. You can start celebrating by committing no violence over the last 15-dollar Blu-Ray player or microwaveable side dish that’s passable as homemade, but don’t stop there–you have a veritable feast of ways to show your love and support for women worldwide!
Global: November 25, also known as International Day Against Violence Against Women, marks the beginning of the annual 16 Days of Activism Against Gender Violence, which ends on Dec. 10, International Human Rights Day. During these 16 days, individuals and groups around the world rally for the elimination of all forms of violence against women. This year’s theme is “From Peace in the Home to Peace in the World: Let’s Challenge Militarism and End Violence Against Women!” Here’s a selection of kick-off events on Friday, November 25:
- Yerevan, Armenia: The Women’s Resource Center of Armenia will lead women and girls in red and white through the city and make a riot of noise every 5 minutes to raise awareness that every 5 minutes, women in their community are subjected to violence.
- Toronto, Canada: Friday is opening night for “Fabric of Violence: Fabricating Change,” an art exhibit, depicting thoughts, emotions and reactions to the issues of freedom, violence and change. The event, presented by THRIVE, features work by women and trans people throughout Toronto aged 10 to 98. Snacks will be provided!
- San Francisco, Calif.: A silent march and vigil in downtown San Francisco will call attention to how corporate greed and militarism lead to violence against women in countries that receive U.S. military aid. This year, organizers are focusing on the women of Colombia, in solidarity with Women in Black groups around the world.
- New York City: On Friday, November 25, a women’s speak-out at Battery Park, Manhattan, N.Y., will focus on the rise of violence against women in this stressed economy, as well as continuing economic violence against women and the brutal policing of women–especially women of color. A “tell my story” segment allows women to write and draw their experiences. To be followed by a march to Zuccotti (Liberty) Park, Wall Street, under the banner, “Wall Street is Violence against Women.” Assemble at 1 pm at Battery Park.
To find 16 Days of Activism Against Gender Violence events in your area, check out this events calendar!
London: The Reclaim the Night 2011 march and rally will take place Saturday, November 26th, in central London. The London Reclaim the Night marches have turned out thousands in the past few years, helped along by their inclusivity–this year’s invite reads:
All women are welcome at Reclaim the Night, including: women of all colours and cultures, of all religions or none, women of any age, disabled and non-disabled women, heterosexual women, lesbians, trans women, bisexual women, refugee and asylum-seeking women and any other women you can think of! We would love to see you all there. Bring along your mothers, grandmothers, sisters, aunts, nieces, and daughters. Join us for the rally after the march too.
Photo via 16 Days of Action Against Gender Violence Campaign, Rutgers School of Arts and Sciences Center for Women’s Global Leadership