I posted the following message on Facebook yesterday and it seems to have struck a nerve.

I will not be supporting the UNiTE to end violence against women campaign and here’s why. I believe what we focus on grows (Appreciative Inquiry principle). The toolkit provided by the United Nations Secretary-General’s Campign UNiTE, contains the word violence 125 times. The word Love does not appear in the document at all. The word Peace only appears once in the document. Having read the document, I felt physically weak and could not in all good conscience support anything that it so focused on violence. That is why I am calling on everyone who reads this post to support Love, Peace, Respect and Dignity for all Women and Children. I believe that if we focus on loving one another, we’ll create more love; when we show respect, we’ll create more respect. Let us show up in the world with dignity. Let’s work towards creating peace, by being peacefull ourselves.
Instead of having pointless marches and wrapping trees in orange fabric, pick up the phone and tell a friend, sister, mother, girlfriend, colleague, grandmother, aunt that she is valued and loved and that you care. Make an extra sandwich for the month of December and hand give it to that person at the busy intersection you see everyday. Show compassion, show kindness. Go visit someone in hospital. Allow the busy lady with the two screaming kids to move to the front of the checkout line at Checkers.
Love, peace, respect and dignity for all women and girls!

Living in South Africa, I can not even comprehend that there is a need to create more awareness about abuse and violence against women. We see it every single day in the media. I believe what we need more of are solutions. We need to show respect and love to all those around us, not just women and girls. Let’s treat ourselves with respect and dignity. Let us show up as victors and not as victims.

Instead of wrapping trees in orange fabric, take that money and buy someone a meal. Reach out to those who you know in your community need support. You don’t have to save the entire world, start with your direct community, your circle of friends, colleagues at work. Help that mom who is struggling to buy school supplies for her child for next year. Donate school clothing back to schools so it can be passed on to someone who needs it.

Dish up a extra plate of food this Christmas and give it to someone you know won’t be having a great Christmas. We can do this every month. Just a small act of kindness consistently will change our neighbourhoods and communities.

To the women and girls out there who need help, please ask for help. Help is available in countless ways. Asking for help does not mean that you have failed in any way, it just means that you require a little more support.

If you need more information on where to get help or can offer help/support, then please get in touch with me.

Love

Judy

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