Don't let the government forget about violence against women
One in three women will experience violence in her lifetime. Grassroots women's rights organisations are the best way to create the real change that will bring down violence against women.1 But right now, they need our support.
Though they make an enormous difference to women’s lives, these organisations are critically underfunded, often at risk of shutting down. In fact, they receive less than 1% of UK aid money for gender equality. We want that to change.
With Priti Patel just confirmed as the new Minister for International Development, let's make sure she knows ending violence against women must be her priority. We cannot let women and girls be forgotten. Now, more than ever, we need to stand with the Fearless women on the frontline of this fight.
Sign the petition now and ask Priti Patel to fund these life-changing women's groups.
Susan helps girls start a new life after fleeing FGM
Susan is the chair of the Kongelai Women’s Network in Kenya, a group of women who educate their communities on the dangers of FGM and forced marriage. They take in girls who've escaped these things and make sure they get an education, often putting girls up in their own homes when they have nowhere to go.
Susan was married at a young age herself after going through FGM, and she says this motivates her to help other girls escape the same fate. She’s proud of the women in the Network, who are extremely dedicated, transforming girls’ lives even though they have very little money to work with. The women will sometimes travel long distances on foot to do their work because they don’t have the funds for transport.
They face a lot of criticism for what they do - Susan says she’s been beaten by irate fathers after helping their daughters. Still, she says the Network is changing attitudes: "Women now are aware that if something is wrong, they will just say it’s wrong. In the past, they would keep quiet about it."
FGM is just one form of violence against women, something that affects one in three women in their lifetimes. By getting proper funding for groups like Susan’s, we can help bring this down. Add your name to tell the UK government to act.
Why is violence against women and girls such a problem?
A third of all women and girls face violence in their lifetime. It's one of the most widespread violations of human rights, and it robs women of control over their bodies and lives. This doesn't just hold back the women it affects - it holds back their families and communities too. Women living in poverty and those facing other forms of discrimination are often at even greater risk.
How do we end violence against women?
Violence against women is preventable. Research shows the vital work of independent women's rights organisations is the single most effective way to create the real change that will bring down violence against women. These organisations are critical drivers of women's movements and wider social movements, with extensive knowledge and experience in ending gender discrimination and creating positive changes in women’s lives.
But these organisations are chronically underfunded, receiving just less than 1% of UK aid money committed for gender equality.
Our government can change this. We’re calling on the UK government to dedicate an extra £70 million from the existing aid budget over the next three years, so that women’s rights organisations can keep doing their transformative work to end violence.
What can I do to end violence against women?
You can stand with the fearless women leading the struggle against gender-based violence, and show the government just how many thousands of us care strongly about this issue. Sign and share the petition to demand action now.
Have you been affected by violence?
If you or a woman you know is facing violence, you can get help by calling the National Domestic Violence Helpline on 0808 2000 247 – it’s free and open 24 hours. You can also visit their website below: