On July 12, Ritu Sharma, co-founder and president of Women Thrive Worldwide, spoke on the Diane Rehm Show (NPR) about violence against women in light of the killing of an Afghani woman accused of adultery. Joined by other experts on gender-based violence (GBV), Ritu discussed violence that results from cultural understandings of morality and sexuality. Essentially, people in power manipulate moral codes and place the blame on women, who are powerless to defend themselves.
In response to these kinds of issues, Ritu insisted that more resources and government support be directed towards programs that respond to violence against women and that combat the sources of the problem.
“A very good friend, Marlene Contreras, in Honduras, was very tired of the violence in her community… Instead of taking violence head on, she decided to organize the women to start growing coffee, so they bought some land. They started growing coffee. They have now become incredibly successful. They export 10,000 pounds of fair trade coffee a year. And the violence stopped,” Ritu stated, illustrating that small investments can make a big difference.
These women have liberated themselves from a cycle of violence, but in some areas of the world, the structures of power are even more oppressive. Thanks to your support, women and girls around the world who face violence will get the help they need to fight for their right to lead safe, prosperous lives.
If you would like to do more, share our brand new project page with your family and friends. Violence against women and girls will only continue, unless we do something to stop it.
Click this link for the full interview.