Tomorrow is the launch of 16 Days Of Action, a worldwide initiative that every year, starts on November 25th, the International Day for the Elimination of Violence against Women, to December 10th, Human Rights Day. The 16 Days of Activism against Gender-Based Violence Campaign is a time to galvanise action to end violence against women and girls around the world.
The international campaign originated from the first Women's Global Leadership Institute coordinated by the Centre for Women's Global Leadership in 1991. And here we are today, still having to create awareness for domestic violence against women.
I approached Womens Aid with an idea to create an online photography campaign showcasing visual stories from victims and survivors of domestic violence, all while maintaining their anonymity. I wanted to help raise awareness for the organisation and highlight domestic violence against women as a serious issue, around the 16 Days of Action initiative that starts on November 25th each year.
If I'm honest, after reading about the brutal murder of Clodagh Hawe and her three children by her "gentleman" husband in Cavan this year, and seeing how little media mention and attention they received, I wanted to help give women a voice to tell their survival stories of similar abuse and change our attitude and how we talk about domestic violence, while simultaneously unifying and empowering more women to speak up and seek help.
Over the next 16 days Womens Aid will be sharing these individual anonymous stories and their accompanying images over on their blog, Facebook and Twitter accounts.
My goal with this project was to help victims of domestic violence speak up and share their experience, with the hopes that through this campaign, we might help a woman build the courage to leave an unhealthy and life threatening relationship; to save a life.
The first photo will be shared on Womens Aid social media platforms on Tuesday the 29th of November.