Responding to Violence Against Women in Kenya

Sr Donatus Lili who is the NGO Regional Representative for Good Shepherd in Africa has been attending the 68th Session of CEDAW (Convention on the Elimination of all forms of Discrimination Against Women)  held in Geneva from October 23, 2017 to  November 17, 2017.   Among the counties presenting this year where Good Shepherd is present were Burkina Faso, Guatemala, Kenya, Paraguay and Singapore.  The various reports and documents are uploaded HERE   Donatus has prepared a report on behalf of Good Shepherd in Kenya on Fistula.  Read the very interesting and informative REPORT prepared by Donatus.

IRWAWWhile in Geneva Donatus had the opportunity to be engaged in the training session sponsored by IWRAW Asia Pacific the only regional/international NGO working with the CEDAW Convention as a main tool for change in the Asia Pacific. We see a critical role for ourselves in filling the gap between the promise of women’s rights and their actual realization.  This group do incredible work prior to each meeting of the CEDAW Committee.

Donatus 3Madam GBEDEMAH Hillary, the rapporteur for Kenya to CEDAW (standing) during a briefing on Wednesday November 1, 2017 prior to the review.                                                         

It was not possible for Donatus to make an oral statement but she did present a copy of her proposed statement to the rapporteur.  NGO (CONGREGATION) written statement to 68th CEDAW Session

The review for Kenya was held on Thursday November 2, 2017  All the documents can be accessed HERE and the UN Webcast Morning Session and the Afternoon Session

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Donatus (center) with  Ambassador Dr. Stephen Ndungu ‘Karau  and on the left Mr. Andrew M. Kihurani, Deputy Ambassador,  Permanent Mission of Kenya to the UN, Geneva.  (Photo taken at the the UN, GENEVA)

Good Shepherd NGO Representatives New York and Geneva – ending violence against women and girls

VAW 1 20`13Good Shepherd NGO Representatives to the United Nations in New York (Winifred) and Geneva (Hedwig Joehl) unite with our partners around the world to end violence against women and girls. In January 2013 we published a report of our work in 24 countries. Respondents from Egypt, India and Myanmar all reported that an “environment that easily accepts acts of Violence against women, that normalizes the fact that women are beaten, and that considers women inferior to men” pose a challenge to introducing concepts of gender equality and women’s rights. Read more English  French  Spanish

For the 16 Days of Activism against Gender based violence see 16days2013 and #orangeurworld with actions to end violence against women and girls!

Share with us what you are doing for the 16 days of activism. Orange Good Shepherd world, your Twitter account and Facebook page.

Working to end violence against women and girls every day!

16 Day of Activism Against Gender Based Violence November 25 to December 10

16 daysThe theme for 2013 is ‘From Peace in the Home to Peace in the World: Let’s Challenge Militarism and End Violence Against Women!’  Informative materials are available at Click here in  العربية,Bahasa IndonesiaBosanskiБългарски,中文 DeutschEnglishEspañol,Français (Côted’Ivoire)Français (Tunisia)ÍslenskaItaliano, Kalenjin,ភាសាខ្មែរLatvijaNederlandsPolski,Portugués, Românăрусский,SlovenščinaSrpskiSvenska,             Türkçe,украї́нська мо́ваXhosa.

The campaign emphasizes that women’s rights are human rights and acknowledges the role of patriarchal systems that embody harmful traditions and legal policies that normalize violences against women, and deny women their rights to a life of dignity.

The normalization of violence was a point that we addressed in our booklet ‘Ending Violence Against Women and Girls’  See page 7Ending Violence 34 “Some respondents reported that in their respective cultures, it is common for physical or even sexual violence to be committed against a woman or girl as punishment, for a crime as defined by the perpetrator. To make matters worse, the reality is that many women and girls suffering from acts of violence accept this treatment either due to cultural or societal pressure, or simply out of a lack of knowledge of their human right to live free of such violence. For instance, in societies with traditional gender roles and attitudes toward marriage and divorce, it may be more difficult to leave a partner even if violent, thus women continue to endure ongoing abuse.  Respondents from Egypt, India, and Myanmar all reported that an “environment that easily accepts acts of violence against women, that normalizes the fact that women are beaten, and that considers women inferior to men” poses a challenge to introducing concepts of gender equality and women’s rights.

Two respondents from Uruguay and Venezuela, identified ‘Macho culture’ as a catalyst for violence against women, and a hindrance to achieving gender equality. Macho culture, which takes on different meanings depending on the culture, is problematic in that it puts pressure on men to dominate and exert control over women, in order to affirm their masculinity, even if it requires the use of violence.”

See French ‘Mettre fin à la violence faite aux femmes et aux filles

See Spanish ‘Poner fin a la violencia contra las niñas y las mujeres

See Chinese     終止對女孩和婦人的暴力 全球善牧24 個國家的服務調查

Follow what is happening on Facebook and use Twitter handles @16DaysCampaign; @CWGLR Rutgers and hashtag #16days

There is a 16 days Take Action Kit Here in multiple languages.  There is a Brochure, 5 Fact Sheets, Information on CSW 58, Suggested Grant Proposal Guidelines, Sample Social Media Posts and Logos.

Find your logo here

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The experiential journey as a three month intern in Geneva

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It was a call from Sr. Susan Chia, Congregational link councilor, who had visited the Sri Lanka/ Pakistan province for a workshop on “Participative model of Leadership” which made me realize the need to get experience in relation to the Human Rights Based Approach and the instruments which were available at international level which could assist us to be more effective at the local level. From that day onwards all the arrangement were made for me to have an experiential learning process in Geneva and I arrived here on 10th January 2013.  Read more…

Congratulation Sr. Niluka Perera from the  Province of Sri Lanka/Pakistan on this achievement and congratulations to your mentors Hedwig and Clare!

Participation in the 54th CEDAW session and Global to Local Mentoring Programme

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As a 3 month human rights intern with the Justice and Peace Office in Geneva, from the Province of Sri Lanka/Pakistan, it was a privilege As a 3 month human rights intern with the Justice and Peace Office in Geneva, from the Province of Sri Lanka/Pakistan, it was a priviled for me to attend the 54th CEDAW session at the UN and take part in a mentoring programmes which was conducted by IWRAW (International Women’s Rights Action Watch Asia Pacific) an international women’s human rights organization.

CEDAW (Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of Discrimination against Women) mandates substantive equality and gender related laws, policies and programmes that are based on human rights. It requires state parties to condemn discrimination against women and ensure its elimination.  The states who have ratified the convention are obliged to submit  reports to the UN every five years and have constructive discussions with the CEDAW committee members on  the implementation of the convention in their respective states.

At the 54th CEDAW session scheduled from 11th February – 1st March 2013 the CEDAW committee reviewed 8 state parties – Pakistan, Austria, Hungary, Cyprus, Greece, Angola, Macedonia, and the Solomon Islands.

As an intern, for my learning I concentrated on the Alternative report of Hungary which was prepared by our sisters in Hungary. The weekend work shop with IWRAW helped me to understand the CEDAW convention as well as the process of the session, the NGO oral presentation, how to effectively lobby committee members and the follow up work that could be done once NGO representatives return home. We were 10 participants representing 5 NGOs from Hungary and Pakistan.

The first three days were spent in writing the oral statements and learning how to present it at the informal meeting between CEDAW and the NGOs. The three days programme focused on the following: how to effectively lobby the CEDAW committee members, an introduction to each committee member including their areas of interest, country rapporteurs, inviting the CEDAW secretary for meaningful dialogue, and conducting mock sessions etc. It helped all NGO representatives to be at ease in forwarding their concerns to the committee members.

Then from Monday to Friday we were at country sessions, presenting our oral statements for lobbying CEDAW committee members at lunch briefings, meeting them and feeding them information from the grassroots level, attending the sessions of reporting by the country delegation, listening to constructive dialogue between the delegations and the CEDAW committee members and daily debriefing with the resource personnel. It was an enriching experience for me. This training helped me to understand how effectively NGOs can work with the CEDAW convention before, during and after the session. Personally I felt that it would have been much better if I was able to come up with the alternative report of my own country. Whenever GS participates in writing alternative reports on our own country we must not miss this opportunity; because as an NGO working towards the empowerment of women, this will be the best opportunity to raise our voice for the voiceless who are violated and disempowered.

I am grateful to the Congregation for giving me an experiential learning opportunity. I am confident that this will enable me to be more effective in my ministry.

Geneva, 17 February 2013, Sr. Niluka Perera

RISE together event at UN Headquarters

The United Nations Secretary General’s UNITE to End Violence Against Women campaign held a RISE together event on February 14th at 12.30.  The UNITE campaign and UN officials came together to RISE to end violence against women and girls.  Deputy Secretary-General of United nations Jan Eliasson addressed all gatheredIMG_1148

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Good Shepherd Activism Against Gender Violence in Australia/New Zealand

The 16 Days of Activism Against Gender Violence Campaign has begun. Good Shepherd in Australia and internationally is taking part through action, advocacy and service delivery.   Read the news/reflection sheet attached and find out what Good Shepherd is doing.  Campaign AgainstViolence 2012_2    Page 4 urges you to take action and page 5 concludes with a prayer.