White Ribbon Day is run by White Ribbon, the largest male-led movement to end violence against women. A not-for-profit organisation, White Ribbon aims to prevent men’s violence against women by engaging boys and men to lead social change. White Ribbon Day is held in recognition of the International Day for the Elimination of Violence against Women, which is on the 25th of November every year.
The White Ribbon vision is that all women can live in safety, free from violence and abuse. White Ribbon is trying to achieve this with a male-led campaign to change attitude and behaviour that allows violence against women to occur.
White Ribbon raise awareness, but also run an Ambassadors programme and prevention initiatives. The Ambassadors programme wants men to be the leaders of the campaign by living the White Ribbon Commitment: never to commit, excuse or remain silent about violence against women. Today, you can show your support by wearing a white ribbon or by signing the White Ribbon pledge (see the link above).
White Ribbon is part of a number of organisations aimed at equality of the sexes and working from the male angle. I have previously blogged about the HeforShe campaign and ManUp. All of these organisations are looking at inequality and violence from men’s point of view. They are treating these issues as men’s problems too as, of course, they are. On the Irish White Ribbon website, it says:
‘The impact of violence against women is widespread and long-standing, generating profound personal, social and economic costs for individuals, communities and the nation.’
Clearly these issues have an impact on everyone, not just women, so it is important that there are campaigns targeting men and using them for social change.