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Why are campaigns needed to end violence against women and girls?

Campaigns over the past decades have contributed significantly to heightening awareness of VAW as a violation of human rights that affects society as a whole. They have helped to rally support for and influence change in international and national legislative and policy frameworks. In spite of such progress, however, violence against women and girls is still rampant in all parts of the world. A continuous, protracted effort throughout society and across disciplines is needed to effectively address the causes of VAW, which are rooted deep in social attitudes and practice.

Campaigns are an appropriate tool in this endeavor, because they can:

  • Make VAW a public issue, and highlight the fact that it is a public concern that affects all segments of society.
  • Challenge and influence change in individual and society-wide attitudes and behaviours that condone and tolerate VAW. 
  • Serve as a vehicle to inform and educate VAW survivors about their right to receive support and redress, and how they can claim these rights.
  • Catalyze the initiatives of different organizations and individuals in coordinated, multi-layered and multi-sector action to prevent VAW and provide effective support to VAW survivors.
  • Build critical mass for change by bringing together people from different backgrounds to create opportunities to learn from each others’ experience, form networks and grow wider and more powerful movements.
  • Develop leadership skills among campaign organizers and supporters, and empower women and men, girls and boys to become individual agents of change, and advocates of gender relations that are free of violence and based on equality.