As the Human Services and Social Security Ministry continues its calendar of activities for 16 Days of Activism, two major activities are planned for today – DefendHer and Younite.
The day will start with “DefendHer!” from 13:00h at the Police Officers’ Mess Hall, Eve Leary. This is a free active seminar that teaches a series of self-defence techniques to women above 16 years through Maxido’s adult self-defence training system.
The techniques that will be taught at the three-hour activity are tailored to suit situations that women in Guyana face on a daily basis and will seek to equip women with the necessary skills to protect themselves.
Subject Minister, Dr Vindhya Persaud related, “This initiative is new and focuses on self-defence techniques, specifically with women. It is done in collaboration with Maxido’s self-defence training and we are encouraging women 16 years and older to come over on Sunday and go through a series of techniques that will help you in defending yourself. It is a fact that many women encounter situations such as robberies and violent crimes and these techniques will help you to resist in a highly skilled manner that could perhaps be life-saving.”
Immediately after that, the action heads over to “Orange Avenue” (Camp and Lamaha Streets) for the “Younited” fair and concert.
This event features several booths from Safe Space, Equal Guyana, Her Venture, women of WIIN, and much more. There will also be a series of games with prizes to be won and a concert showcasing the talent of the Ministry’s Young Influencers. Admission is also free and open from 16:00h.
To date, the Ministry has completed sensitisation exercises in Regions Four, Five and Six, hosted consultations on Guyana’s CEDAW Report, a massive “Talk Yuh Mind” rally as well as campaigns on elderly abuse, sexual violence and bullying and body shaming in schools.
The 16 Days of Activism against GBV is an annual campaign that begins on Nov 25, International Day for the Elimination of Violence against Women, and runs until December 10, when Human Rights Day is observed. This campaign was started by activists at the inaugural Women’s Global Leadership Institute in 1991 and continues to be coordinated each year by the Centre for Women’s Global Leadership.
The other initiatives planned include a nationwide consultation on the new Family Violence Act, and campaigns to raise awareness against cyber abuse and domestic violence.