The aim of the White Ribbon Ireland Campaign is to prevent men’s violence against women in Ireland through a male lead campaign and to change attitudes and behaviours that allow all forms of men’s violence against women to occur.
Through primary prevention initiatives and an annual campaign, White Ribbon Ireland seeks to change the attitudes and behaviours that lead to and perpetuate men’s violence against women, by engaging boys and men to lead social change.
Our vision is for all women to live safety, free from violence and abuse.
On the afternoon of 6 December 1989, a man walked into the École Polytechnique University in Montreal, Canada and massacred 14 of his female classmates. His actions traumatised a nation and brought the issue of violence against women to the forefront of our collective consciousness.
Two years later, a handful of men in Toronto decided they had a responsibility to speak out about and work to stop men’s violence against women. As a result, the White Ribbon Campaign in Canada became an annual awareness-raising event, held between 25 November and 6 December.
In 1999, the United Nations General Assembly declared 25 November as the International Day for the Elimination of Violence against Women, with a white ribbon as its iconic symbol.
In November 2010, White Ribbon began nationally in Ireland with its launch by The Other Half in Dublin.
The Other Half is an alliance of three national men’s and women’s organisations, SAFE Ireland, the Rape Crisis Network Ireland and the Men’s Development Network.
In 2012, The Men’s Development Network with the support of Rape Crisis Network Ireland and Safe Ireland took on the responsibility to promote the White Ribbon Campaign nationally in Ireland.
The White Ribbon Campaign in Ireland run nationally by the Men’s Development Network is a registered company under the Corporations Act 2001. White Ribbon Ireland’s Board ensures compliance with the organisation’s and the campaign’s vision, mission and objectives, and guides the development, execution and modification of the organisation’s and campaign strategy.
White Ribbon Ireland’s national office is situated in Waterford.
Primary sources of funding are government grants, philanthropic trusts, White Ribbon merchandise sales, and national and community-based fundraising events.
White Ribbon is the world’s largest male-led movement to end men’s violence against women. White Ribbon Ireland is a non-profit organisation and Ireland’s only national, male-led primary prevention campaign to end men’s violence against women.
International White Ribbon Day takes places every year on November 25th and celebrates the culmination of the annual campaign and global recognition of the International Day for the Elimination of Violence against Women. As such, men and women are encouraged to wear a symbolic white ribbon on this day and take the pledge to “never commit, excuse or remain silent about men’s violence towards women”.
White Ribbon Day (25th November) also signals the start of the 16 Days of Activism to Stop Men’s Violence against Women, which ends on Human Rights Day (10 December).
The existence of the White Ribbon Campaign in Ireland relies on some government funding plus the support and generosity of individuals, corporate and community partners and governments – as well as the community at large.
All funding and donations to White Ribbon Ireland help to support best practice primary intervention activities and research aimed at changing attitudes and behaviours that result in violence against women.
A regular donation can help us put in place longer term awareness and education projects to change community attitudes and behaviors.
Intimate partner violence is the most common type of violence against women, affecting 30 percent of women worldwide, according to the 2013 World Health Organization report Global and regional estimates of violence against women: Prevalence and health effects of intimate partner violence and non-partner sexual violence.
Ireland is not immune. Violence against women is a serious problem in Ireland. The impact of violence against women is widespread and long-standing, generating profound personal, social and economic costs for individuals, communities and the nation.
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