By: Joanna Diaz Sabado
SAN FERNANDO CITY, Nov 24 (PIA) – The Region 1 Advocates for Gender Equality (RAGE-1) on Friday launched the series of activities for the 18-day campaign to end violence against women (VAW) through the “Walk for Gender Equality” from San Fernando City Plaza to Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas (BSP).
According to the Philippine Commission of Women (PCW), “the 2017 campaign approach is to make people understand VAW from the point of view of victim-survivors… deeper understanding would ignite compassion from stakeholders, so that they would not commit, condone, or remain silent about VAW. For service providers, such compassion towards victim-survivors would encourage them to provide better services to their clients.”
After the fun walk, there will be film viewings and presentations related to the Republic Act 9262 otherwise known as the Anti-Violence Against Women and their children (VAWC) Act of 2004.
Part of the awareness campaign is a Gender and Development (GAD) quiz bee and poster-making contest on December 4 which is expected to be actively participated by regional government agencies.
For her part, Dr. Cherrie May Pocsidio-Laroco, RAGE-1 president, said “Violence against women emanates from gender inequality and stereotyping which was ingrained in our culture for several centuries and only through advocating gender equality and empowering women can we truly end VAW.”
She added, “Through the activities, we intend to inform and engage all stakeholders of government programs and services to promote a VAW-free community, create and facilitate platforms to discuss good practices, available services, gaps, challenges and commitments in pursuing a VAW-free community and inspire and empower women and girls to be agents of change.”
To cap off the activities, two pressing topics namely anti-human trafficking and anti-illegal recruitment will be discussed during the lecture-forum on Dec. 12, also at the BSP office.
“We want to increase awareness that human trafficking is a form of VAW and that efforts to stop human trafficking and illegal recruitment is a way to end VAW,” Dr. Laroco said.
In a report from the Philippine National Police Women and Children Protection Council (PNP-WCPC), a total of 15,749 cases of violations Republic Act 9262 were filed before the PNP from January to June this year.
But only three out of 10 women sought help to stop the violence.
The 18-day campaign to end VAW is observed annually from November 25 to December 12 to raise awareness among stakeholders that VAW is a public issue of national concern.
November 25 is declared as national consciousness day for the elimination of violence against women and children. (JNPD/JDS/PIA-1, La Union)