CARE Campaign Hopes To End Domestic Violence In Laos

A new campaign launched by CARE in Laos seeks to shift many of the traditional attitudes towards domestic violence. The drive is designed to help local men stand up and speak out and is being supported by the Australian Embassy in Laos and White Ribbon Australia. It is hoped that men participating in the campaign will pledge never to commit violence against women.

A violation of human rights

One of the most common and systemic human rights violations in the world is violence against women. In fact it is estimated that as many as one in three women globally have experienced some kind of sexual or physical violence according to the Women’s Day report authored by the United Nations. Another report from the UN found that in Laos there was little information of how prevalent violence against women is, however there is anecdotal evidence that suggests this kind of violence is common and is either accepted or stays concealed.

“Violence against women both reflects and perpetuates a deep injustice. Gender inequality is the fundamental cause of violence against women and we will only see an end to violence when equality is understood. At the same time, gender equality will never be achieved if a third of the world’s women have their right to health, participation and justice compromised through violence.” said Glenn Bond, Country Director of CARE International in Lao PDR.

Men can be an inspiration for change

Whilst using men as the inspiration to trigger change is nothing new to either CARE International or White Ribbon, the concept is new to Laos. In order to shine a light on the campaign, CARE is hosting a number of events in the coming weeks that will help raise local awareness. The events combined with local community conversations are an important step in changing prevailing attitudes towards domestic violence and will hopefully improve the lives of girls and women.

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