Every year, the 16 Days of Activism against Gender-Based Violence (GBV) campaign launches on International Day for the Elimination of Violence against Women on November 25 until International Human Rights Day on December 10. The purpose of this campaign is to raise awareness of GBV and help eliminate the brutal forms of violence that women and girls across the globe endure. Women’s rights institutions and feminist activists around the world get involved through different methods, and the Asfari Institute for Civil Society and Citizenship is no exception.
On November 25, 2022, the Asfari Institute kick-started its 16 days of activism campaign with a series of educational posts on Instagram that aimed at raising awareness of GBV generally and care work specifically. This year’s theme focused on care work, which is defined as a form of paid or unpaid work often performed by women because of certain societal and cultural expectations and standards set on them. Care work mostly jeopardizes women’s chances and possibilities of being involved in the labor market and can take a toll on their mental well-being and quality of life.
The campaign offered a glimpse into the reality of care workers and the detrimental effects that unpaid work has on women and their participation in the economy. Additionally, it offered different ways in which individuals can take action, be it through education, pushing for stronger laws, or donating to international non-governmental organizations (NGOs), and local centers. In order to get an academic perspective, the Asfari Institute also shared valuable resources from professors, researchers, and authors who have previously discussed, written, and advocated for care worker rights.
For instance, the campaign included an excerpt from the event “Feminist Perspective on Work & Care in Pandemic Time”, in which Dr. Naila Kabeer, Professor of Gender and Development at the London School of Economics, shared how the COVID-19 pandemic affected women in their homes and how it significantly increased the care burden and violence against them. Additionally, another short interview took place with Dr. Shivani Satija to discuss the role of feminist civil society groups, organizations, and activists in protecting care workers along with many other related themes.
Girls and women continue to be abused and violated of their basic human rights. Girls and women continue to be seen as inferior to men, as caregivers and housewives who were born to do chores and listen to the demands of the male figures in their lives. Despite the slow progress that has happened over the past decade in relation to women’s role in society, it is undeniable that women still face barriers that inhibit them from advancing their careers. The objective of this campaign was to raise awareness of GBV and care work through different methods, such as academic and education posts, short films, interviews, and statistical figures. The Asfari Institute intended on showing the struggles that care workers go through in different parts of the world, and it succeeded in doing so.
Take a look at this year’s 16 Days of Activism campaign on our Instagram page.
About the author
Liliane Mohamad is an intern at the Asfari Institute for Civil Society and Citizenship. She graduated with a Political Science degree from Haigazian University in 2022 and has focused her work and interests in the fields of human rights, women’s rights, and law. Liliane looks forwards to doing her masters in Human Rights Law and dedicating her time to more writing and research.