by Mairi MacRae
By George Rupp, President, IRC
The International Rescue Committee is deeply committed to protecting and empowering women and girls in crisis zones and countries recovering from war and disaster. And through the strong ties our staff has forged with the women we assist, we have come to see that far too often the riskiest place for a woman is where you might least expect it to be—in her own home.
Afghanistan is a country facing vast challenges. It is one of the poorest nations on earth. Last year the United Nations reported that 36% of Afghans live in “absolute” poverty. Another challenge? Education. The literacy rate is approximately 43% for men, and 13% for women. Corruption is an ongoing problem as well, with the country currently ranked as the 180th most corrupt nation out of 183.
From 25 November to 10 December, the International Rescue Committee is observing the "16 Days of Activism against Gender Violence."
MAKAMBA PROVINCE, BURUNDI – For Céline Mpitabakana and her husband, Jean, saving enough money to buy a small plot of land was always a fond but distant dream. In 1993, the couple had been forced to flee their home in Makamba Province in southern Burundi as civil war engulfed the country.
Across the globe, women and girls face unspeakable violence. Yet thousands of people worldwide are fighting every day for a safer world for women. In the Wake Up Call, a new video series, the IRC features those individuals working to put an end to violence against women.
The UK Government must do more to meet the ongoing acute needs of the most vulnerable people, uphold human rights and support recovery in Iraq, say a group of eight humanitarian and development organisations ahead of the appearance by International Development Secretary Douglas Alexander before the Iraq Inquiry today. Eight years on, Iraqi people continue to bear the brunt of the conflict in terms of casualties, displacement, destroyed livelihoods, and restricted access to adequate services. Millions are still displaced in Iraq and throughout the region.
By Joanne Offer 2009 marks the 18th anniversary of the "16 days of Activism Against Gender Violence" campaign. It's 2am when Apio Agnes's mobile phone rings. She's suddenly awake and ready to go. It's her night to answer calls to a 24-hour hotline dedicated to anyone who needs advice or support on rape, domestic violence, sexual harassment or other forms of gender-based violence. The hotline gives victims and potential targets of violence the chance to talk to a trained professional in confidence.
2009 marks the 18th anniversary of the "16 Days of Activism Against Gender Violence" campaign. The campaign brings together people from around the world to speak out against violence against women. The campaign begins each year on 25 November - the International Day Against Violence Against Women - and continues until 10 December, International Human Rights Day. These dates were chosen to highlight how violence against women is a serious violation of human rights.
A Ministry of Defence advertisement which shows images of a soldier handing out emergency aid is misleading and could endanger aid workers and the people they help, says a group of UK aid agencies. International Rescue Committee UK, Mercy Corps and 10 other UK NGOs working with people affected by conflict around the world, are jointly calling on the Ministry of Defence to decide against repeating the Mission 3 instalment of its recruitment campaign, titled Start Thinking Soldier.