By Martine Jean-Baptiste - FAHM Founder, Executive Director
Hope this finds you and your loved ones well.
November is a busy month. It is a time of reflection and mindfulness. It is a time for gratitude and activism. Important dates to note:
November 25- International Day for the Elimination of Violence Against Women. The 16 days between November 25th and December 10th (Human Rights Day) are known as the 16 Days of Activism against Gender-Based Violence which is a time to galvanize action to end violence against women and girls around the world. The slogan used is “Orange the World.” Orange symbolizing a brighter future free of violence.
November 25- Thanksgiving. It traditionally began as a day of giving thanks and sacrifice for the blessing of the harvest and of the preceding year.
November 26- National Native American Heritage Day. Native Americans are accorded special honor for their rich cultures, accomplishments, contributions and heritage.
November 30- #GivingTuesday. It is the first Tuesday after Thanksgiving. It is touted as a "global generosity movement unleashing the power of people and organizations to transform their communities and the world." It is known as a Global Day of Giving.
Some alarming stats in Haiti:
1 in 3 women have reported violence from an intimate partner
29% of women of childbearing age have been victims of physical violence (45% being from their intimate partner)
31% report having been victims of multiple forms of violence (verbal, physical, etc)
FAHM remains committed to enabling Haitian midwives to combat gender-based violence (GBV). This year, thanks to your continued support:
We teamed up with One Billion Rising Ayiti to host a public educational live Zoom/Facebook and Boston radio/TV streaming of our “Man to Man Discussion”: a four-part series on cultural, social, religious, and legal issues surrounding and ending GBV from a male lens perspective. We were able to reach a wide audience from Haiti, USA, Canada and some African countries.
We hosted an amazing and empowering virtual conference on September 17th and 24th presented by renowned Haitian experts. Your support enabled midwives and midwifery students across Haiti’s ten departmental regions to receive phone/internet minutes in order to connect and attend the sessions.
These last couple of years have been extremely traumatic and stressful in Haiti. We continue to offer support to those victimized by GBV as well as those needing mental health support. We post resources on our social media where Haitians living in Haiti can make a toll-free call and immediately connect to professional psychological support.
The holiday season is known as a time of celebration and gratitude. We must also be mindful that for many it can be a time of increased stress, isolation and vulnerability with documented spikes in cases of GBV. FAHM asks for your continued support in spreading the word about the important work of Haiti’s midwives in ending GBV in Haiti. Please spread the word to your networks, friends and family as we enter this season of gratitude and giving. Let’s “Orange” this world as we look to a brighter future free of violence.
Wishing you and your loved ones a very safe and happy holiday season.
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