Calling all women - What we can do to help stop the war of violence against women worldwide

You may think that you can do nothing to stop the seemingly unstoppable tide of violence against women that is sweeping the world. From the advance of radical Islam, the appalling attitude of men in India, Silvio Berlosconi standing for office again in Italy,Todd Akin in the USA saying that some rapes were understandable, the list seems endless.

Today we can do something. the campaigning website Avaaz wants to start with India and prevent these men from holding or standing for political office, publicise awareness of these horrific crimes and change the attitude of men towards the women in their own country. They will also help victims prosecute their attackers and support them in their difficult time.

If a young Pakistani girl can be shot for wanting to be educated and be as strong as we have seen her on our tv screens, surely we can help by donating what we can afford to give to this, one of the most worthwhile campaigns that I have ever seen.

You will find the information you need on

If you have never heard of avaaz, I can reassure you that it is a highly regarded campaiging website and your money will be applied to this cause.

Please help women whose only crime is to be female!

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Your work sounds amazing, heart breaking and immensely enriching at the same time Brian. I can vouch for Avaaz too Jane and have supported them on this, as well as ONE BILLION RISING. We can all so something to help, even in our own back garden. What happens 'out there' also 'happens' to us. We are not as separate as we would like to believe...

Does it matter? Jane called all women, and attracted plenty of men. I think it's a bit like a box, file or letter marked "private"!

There aren't many events in France on 14th February.

Totally agree.

I signed the avaaz petition and am, of course wholeheartedly with them. One thing we could do, everyday, is make a consistent effort to weed out all comments we hear round us that go in the direction of "I think rape is wrong, but...". The same applies to barely veiled racist comments, especially as they seem to go together. I've noticed that most people who make these comments are not really ill intentioned, but they generate the idea that some rapes are valid while others are not, which is a complete and total heresy. We could also make sure that young people understand that rape is sex without consent, rather than sex with violence as this is still unclear for many people.

Thanks Jane. I contribute some and get paid a bit. It's doing something that matters though. So keep up the petitions and other initiatives.

Glad you got the work Brian!

What I am doing for three days this week is training people to work with displaced victims of trafficking, in this case children, who are consequently found begging on the streets of SE and Central European streets. These are both boys and girls, some of whom have escaped from places where they were held for prostitution. Statistically more men are trafficked as cheap labour, a few less women for the worst things from housemaids to prostitutes and then children in smaller but quite significant numbers for the rest.

Your link won't work because I notice a missing F so here it is again who are more of an awareness raising than action. The people I am working for this week are so that you can see actual project work I am involved with at present. ECPAT is another worth looking at, especially at this time their work on trafficked girls It all helps knowing a bit more.

That sounds really interesting - new to me!

Another site worth supporting is, raising awareness of people trafficking. the victims

are mainly women, most of them vulnerable.

I would be pleased to BUT I shall be travelling from 0730 through to after 2200 and depending on whether I can log on at CDG between flights will not say I'll see you then. Otherwise, please keep up the effort but please remember to give the same effort to other causes that are as important such as the situation of children and the violence against and genocide of minority ethnic groups.

What are you doing on 14th February?

I seem to have missed an unfavourable comment due to coming down with a stinking cold.
I certainly would not ask anyone to support a cause financially if I was not sure that the campaigners involved were totally above board. In the case of Avaaz, one can only be thankful that there such people to keep the rest of us up to the mark.
I addressed this blog to women because this is a really effective way that we can support women worldwide. Any extra support is always welcome. We have two daughters, so anything we can do to make the lives of young women safer and more fulfilling has to worth it.
I would also ask all SFNers to join in on the 14th February.

Jerry, as I have learned over many years involved with children (street children alone since about 1970), one issue at a time, then eventually work through them all. Right now the focus is on women and I am sure that nobody will take what you are saying wrongly or badly, but if you think it needs to be dealt with now simply join avaaz if you have not already and post your issue and watch how people respond. However, give the women issue a couple of weeks to settle in and be established then do it. I imagine it will also be well supported.

I would only suggest that the title of this blog should read "Calling all women and men....). As a male in a female dominated field I have discovered that men think this is a female problem. It is our wives, daughters, sisters, and mothers that are being assaulted. It is time that men take a role in dealing with this worldwide problem. When I first started in this field, women I worked thought it was ridiculous that a male would work in sexual assault. The question was why would a woman want to talk to a man about being assaulted. What we discovered was that I became one of the most effective counselors because I cared and the women I helped recognized I was there because I cared. Instead of being afraid of men or hating men, I was their first contact as a caring man. It is time for men to take a stand also. This problem is our problem too! We are historically suppose to be the protectors. So why do we sit by and delegate this problem completely over to women.

I haven't set up a site for this, I just came across one called vday but now realise it is part of the one billion rising day on 14th February, mentioned before.

Brian - Steve has said he won't be posting on this thread again so I think we can all leave it at that and get Jane's post back on track. :)

Steve Morris, you are now becoming offensive. "it's all a scam for money" is a subjective statement without evidence. avaaz are entirely open about their funding, they are a small group of semi-voluntary, low paid people as are many charities. I have had trusteeships myself, including for charities where accusations of misappropriating money have been made which was absolutely not the case and know full well that the government departments who regulate charitable bodies in the USA, where avaaz is, the UK, France or wherever else are far too vigilant to allow 'scams'. They happen where there are unregulated bodies. So do not CHEAPEN charitable work with your 'views'. Prove otherwise and there would be no problem.

As for the cavalier way you are decrying the original post which relates to particular campaigns against women with what you are saying, be very very careful. Saying the 'real problem' behind these things is religion is simply to seek a scapegoat. I am not saying this as an offended Christian or whatever because I do not practice any belief, but also know that to a greater extent religions teach compassion and care for fellow human beings. Do not pick up what happens in some countries in the name of religion and make that such a shallow argument. It is offensive to those who believe who are not violent and uncaring.

Yes, what you are saying about men and children may be true. Those require entirely separate campaigns that are not somehow set up in competition to what is happening now. Your arrogance and the rude comment about Louise setting up a site to, by implication, scam money from people warrants a complaint from several directions. Yes, you do appal me too.

Not at all. No one's opinions are 'worthless' but opinions are just that.

My concern was merely the tone in which they were being expressed.

I don't think it is for donations but there are just events being organised all over the world to demonstrate against violence against women. I don't think many men have been gang raped by 20 women.