Orange DayPhoto Credit UNFPA
Where’s the money for initiatives to prevent and end violence against women and girls? Orange Day, 25th June 2015
The United Nations Secretary-General’s Campaign UNiTE to End Violence against Women has proclaimed the 25th of each month as ‘Orange Day’, a day to raise awareness and take action against violence against women and girls. As a bright and optimistic colour, orange represents a future free from violence against women and girls, for the UNiTE Campaign. Initiated and led by the UNiTE campaign Global Youth Network, Orange Day calls upon activists, governments and UN partners to mobilize people and highlight issues relevant to preventing and ending violence against women and girls, not only once a year, on 25 November (the International Day for the Elimination of Violence against Women), but every month.
FINANCING INITIATIVES TO PREVENT AND END VIOLENCE AGAINST WOMEN AND GIRLS
Resources for initiatives to prevent and end violence against women and girls are severely lacking. A recent study by the Foundation Center, a US-based organization, found that only 2 per cent of all human rights-related giving by private foundations is allocated to ending violence against women and girls. According to research undertaken by the Association for Women’s Rights in Development (AWID), the median income for women’s rights organizations globally does not amount to more than US $20,000.
In recent years, this challenge has come under the spotlight, for example, as a review theme at the 56th Commission on the Status of Women in 2011, which resulted in recommendations which included the need to increase financing significantly for women’s rights, gender equality and women’s empowerment through Official Development Assistance, national government resources and other types of support. At the 59th session of the Commission on the Status of Women earlier this year, there was consensus by the international community about the need for concrete actions to increase investment in gender equality and empowerment initiatives which was reflected in a Political Declaration.
A KEY MOMENT TO REVERSE THE FUNDING SHORTFALL
Opportunities in the coming months could prove pivotal in reversing the trend of chronic underinvestment in initiatives to prevent and end violence against women and girls. In September 2015, the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) will be adopted, providing a new framework for international development across the globe. The new goals are expected to address gender equality, empowerment, and violence against women.
For these commitments to be transformed into real change in the lives of women and girls, they must be matched with an ambitious and robust financing package. Governments will come together in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia, from 13-16 July for the Third International Conference on Financing for Development to discuss financing for development. Central to these discussions will be funding for the SDGs. The meeting provides an historic opportunity to endorse a transformative and comprehensive global financing framework for gender equality and empowerment. It is therefore a critical moment to urge those participating to put gender equality and women’s empowerment at the heart of the Financing for Development discussions and negotiations.
UN TRUST FUND TO END VIOLENCE AGAINST WOMEN
An important source of funding for initiatives focusing on preventing and ending violence against women is the United Nations Trust Fund to End Violence against Women (the UN Trust Fund). As the only multilateral grant making mechanism addressing this issue, the Fund is a good example of the potential impact and local results that are possible when programs aimed at ending violence are adequately funded.
The UN Trust Fund’s grants range from youth engagement programs, to community-based interventions, to initiatives providing social, medical, financial and psychological support to survivors of violence and those at risk. Since its creation, the UN Trust Fund has awarded more than USD 100 million to 393 initiatives in 136 countries and territories. It currently supports 86 programmes in 71 countries, with a value of USD 55.1 million. By 2017, the UN Trust Fund’s impact is expected to affect the lives of 2.3 million people. However, the Fund is able to fund just a fraction of the requests for funding it receives each year, while demand is growing steadily. In 2013 for example, it received 2,410 applications for a total of more than US$ 1.1 billion from 145 countries, though was able to award grants of US$7.86 million.
ORANGE DAY ACTIVITIES
This Orange Day, raise awareness of the need to fund initiatives to prevent and end violence against women and girls:
- Support the UN Trust Fund at http://www.untfsupporters.com/, watch and share the UN Trust Fund video, join the UN Trust Fund’s Facebook page and follow the UN Trust Fund on Twitter. Check out the Soko + UN Trust Fund bracelet and the @SayNO_UNiTE t-shirt which are helping to raise money for the UN Trust Fund, and encourage your networks to do the same using the hashtags #OrangeDay and #UNTF.
- Organize a discussion with your community about challenges and solutions in securing funding for initiatives to prevent and end violence against women and girls.
- Find out if your government is participating in the Third International Conference on Financing for Development, and watch out for the outcome document to learn about what commitments it has made: http://www.un.org/esa/ffd/ffd3/preparatory-process/drafting-sessions.html
- Civil Society Organizations: are you engaged in the conversation around the Third International Conference on Financing for Development? Learn about UN Women’s call to mobilize women’s groups around financing for development and how you can add your voice to the discussion: http://gender-financing.unwomen.org/en
UN Trust Fund to End Violence against Women: http://www.unwomen.org/en/trust-funds/un-trust-fund-to-end-violence-against-women
UN Women, Financing for Gender Equality: http://gender-financing.unwomen.org/en
UN Women’s Call to Action mobilizing women’s groups around Financing for Development: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6a5bPDih860&feature=youtu.be
Women’s Working Group on Financing for Development: http://wwgonffd.org
Association for Women's Rights in Development (AWID), Resourcing Women's Rights:
SAMPLE SOCIAL MEDIA MESSAGES
Happy #OrangeDay! Ahead of the #FFD3 in Addis Ababa next month, UNiTE campaign says funding to end #VAW must be a priority @UNTrustFundEVAW
Happy #OrangeDay! This month’s Orange Day theme is ‘where’s the money for initiatives to end violence against women and girls’. Only with unprecedented funding and support can the goal to end violence against women and girls become a reality. World leaders are due to come together in Addis Ababa on 13 – 16 July for the Third International Conference on Financing for Development to discuss the funding of the post-2015 development agenda. Learn more about the process and add your voice to the debate: http://owl.li/mlJkg
The UNiTE campaign has declared the 25th of each month as #OrangeDay – a day of action to end all forms of violence against women and girls. This month we are highlighting the importance of funding initiatives to end violence against women and girls. The UN Trust Fund to end Violence against Women is a critical source of funding for initiatives to end violence against women and girls. Learn more about the innovative programmes supported by the Trust Fund and help ‘make a dent’ in the massive demand for funding for initiatives to end #VAW htp:// owl.li/NzcFo @SayNO_UNiTE
There is one universal truth, applicable to all countries, cultures and communities: violence against women is never acceptable, never excusable, never tolerable.
SECRETARY-GENERAL BAN KI-MOON