Ending Gender Based Violence #WhatWillYouDo

Orkney Rape and Sexual Assault Service (ORSAS) will be celebrating the 30th Anniversary of 16 Days of Activism Against Gender-Based Violence.

From the 25 November to 10 December, organisations across Scotland and internationally host events to call for the prevention and elimination of violence against women & girls. This year’s campaign theme across Scotland is #WhatWillYouDo to end gender-based violence.

On 25 November 2021, ORSAS will be marking the beginning of 16 Days by illuminating St. Magnus Cathedral in Orange in recognition of the UN International Day for the Elimination of Violence against Women & Girls. ORSAS are encouraging the community to light up their windows with candles and fairy lights in solidarity and share their images on social media using the hashtag #LightUp in a covid friendly version of a Take Back the Night March.

Throughout the 16 days ORSAS will be working with partners across the Highlands and Islands, to create a social media campaign to promote awareness and provide essential facts surrounding the themes of gender-based violence. This includes that domestic abuse and sexual violence happens everywhere, including Orkney.

According to a UN report, one in three women globally have experienced some form of gender-based violence in their lifetimes. Locally, ORSAS has seen over double the number of referrals to their service. Nationally, Police Scotland have reported that dealing with domestic abuse incidents is the greatest single demand on their time, with one incident being reported every nine minutes. Experiencing violence and abuse can result in long term trauma and can impact on mental and physical health as well as have impacts on individuals’ education and employment and costs Scotland £4 billion.

Exhibitions are in place at the ORSAS Equality Hub at 26 Bridge Street, as well as in the VAO windows at Anchor Buildings. Women’s Aid will have their exhibition called ‘A Moment in Time’ at Number 25 from 25 November to 01 December 2021.

The 16 Days campaign will conclude on 10 December, which is Human Right’s Day, with a display of #PeedieBirds across the St Magnus Cathedral green between 2-6pm. All are welcome to view the installation, take photos and make pledges of support. #WhatWillYouDo to help end gender-based violence?

To keep up to date with the campaign check out the ORSAS Facebook (@orkneyRSAS) and Instagram pages (@orkneyrsas). More information and placards on www.changeherstory.org

#16Days #LightUp #PeedieBirds #WhatWillYouDo

Orkney Rape & Sexual Assault Service provides free and confidential information, advocacy and support to anyone in Orkney (age 13 and over) affected by any form of sexual violence. This includes survivors of sexual violence and their friends, partners and families

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