A flock of peedie birds landed on the Kirk Green in Kirkwall on Thursday 10th of December.
Their arrival marked the last day in the campaign of 16 Days of Activism Against Gender-Based Violence which takes place from 25 November to 10 December every year.
For each of the 16 days, organisations shared resources and stories online using the hashtags #ChangeHerStory #peediebirds
More than 13 organisations across the Highlands and Islands worked together to raise awareness of domestic abuse and sexual violence and how it affects people in our local communities.
White Ribbon Orkney
White Ribbon Orkney has recently been set up. It campaigns to involve more men in helping to address violence against women. You can read more about that here: White Ribbon Orkney #16Days
Volunteer speakers are sought to join White Ribbon Orkney (WRO) to raise awareness in respect of gender stereotyping, gender inequality, bystander theory and the different forms of violence against women. They do this by holding events which provide an opportunity for education and discussion.
The #ChangeHerStory campaign calls on the general public, politicians and businesses to share what they would like to see change for women and girls using the hashtag #ChangeHerStory.
The campaign has been supported by Maree Todd MSP, SNP for the Highlands and Islands.
“We live in a gender stereotyped world. I want to change the cultural conditioning we all experience, because at the very least it limits our horizons and at the very worst it creates a world where violence against women & girls is more likely.
“We have some fantastic support services available throughout the Highlands & Islands, from RASAH (Rape & Sexual Abuse Service Highland) to the Orkney Rape and Sexual Assault Service (ORSAS).
“I would encourage anyone who is a victim of abuse to reach out to their local support service and access the necessary support. You are not alone – please don’t suffer in silence.”
The end of the #ChangeHerStory campaign was marked in Scotland on the 10 December at 7 pm with a virtual ‘Reclaim the Night’ march.
Zelda Bradley, Service Manager at Orkney Rape & Sexual Assault Service (ORSAS), explained:
“This year, COVID has had devastating impact for many survivors of domestic abuse and sexual violence. Our service received the same number of referrals in 6 months that we supported in the whole of last year. “
Thursday 10th of December was also Human Rights Day and in respect of that and the peedie birds campaign the St Magnus Cathedral was floodlit in blue.
Support services in the Highlands and Islands:
- RASASH (Rape & Sexual Abuse Service Highland) – 03330 066909
- ORSAS (Orkney Rape and Sexual Assault Service) – 01856 872298
- Shetland Rape Crisis – 01595 747174
- Caithness and Sutherland Women’s Aid – 0345 408 0151
- Lochaber’s Women’s Aid – 01397 705734
- Inverness Women’s Aid – 01463 220719
- Ross-shire Women’s Aid – 01349 863568
Reporter: Fiona Grahame