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Every year, people around the world observe the 16 Days of Activism Against Gender-Based Violence, which run from November 25 (International Day for the Elimination of Violence Against Women) through December 10 (World Human Rights Day). In Canada, we also observe the National Day of Remembrance and Action Against Violence Against Women, in honour of the women who died in the horrific mass shooting at Polytechnique Montréal on December 6, 1989.

Everyone has the right to live, work, and study in a safe environment free from violence. Many people in Canada and throughout the world, however, continue to experience violence on a daily basis as a result of their gender, gender expression, gender identity, or perceived gender.

The 16 Days of Activism, which began in 1991 with activists at the inaugural Women’s Global Leadership Institute, are a chance for Canadians and others around the world to come together to speak out against gender-based violence and to reiterate our pledge to ending violence against women, girls, LGBTQ2 (Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender, Queer, Two Spirit), and gender-diverse individuals. It is a chance for us to rally, speak out, and renew our commitment to ending gender-based violence.

For 114 years, YWCA Edmonton has been committed to create equity in our community, inclusive of all. We work to create lasting change, influencing public policy, empowering people to stand up for social justice and foster healthy, equitable communities. Our advocacy aims to end gender-based violence, achieve economic equality, reduce barriers to social supports and foster leadership in women and girls.

We can make a difference by not only fundraising to support YWCA Edmonton’s gender-based violence prevention and recovery programs and advocacy efforts, but also helping spread the word about ways we can all ensure women and girls are safe in our community. Support us through our Rose Campaign at https://www.ywcaofedmonton.org/events/rose-campaign/.

Key Dates:
November 25: International Day for the Elimination of Violence Against Women
December 6: National Day of Remembrance and Action Against Violence Against Women
December 10: World Human Rights Day