YWCA’s Canada Rose Campaign 2010 to End Violence Against Women
For over 19 years the YWCA Canada, as part of their commitment to end violence against women (VAW) and children, has been hosting the “Rose Campaign to End Violence against Women.”
Violence against women and girls is a global pandemic with women and girls affected by violence in every region and every country. In Canada women are more likely than men to be victims - over 50% of Canadian women will experience an incident of violence at some point in their lives, the majority before they turn 25. To tackle this global issue the Rose Campaign works year-round with the aim of reducing violence against women, increasing public awareness and preventing violence before it starts.
The Rose Campaign to End Violence Against Women is organised by the YWCA and it is a national advocacy campaign to end violence against women and girls in Canada. The campaign name originates from the original Rose button which was created 20 years ago in remembrance of the victims of the l’Ecole Polytechnique massacre. It also calls for action on violence against women, and promotes strategies to stop violence in communities. The l’Ecole Polytechnique massacre occurred in 1989, at a school campus in Montreal. 14 young women lost their lives at the hands of a young man who specifically targeted females when he carried out his shooting spree across the busy premises.
There are many ways one can participate in the campaign and take action including: speaking out against negative media images of women, supporting organisations that work to end violence against women, promoting economic and political equality, teaching girls to empower and protect themselves, wearing a rose button and speaking up against violence in your local communities. The YWCA Canada’s Rose Campaign also allows for individuals and groups to send a message to their Members of Parliament by sending a Rose through their website.
The Rose Campaign is just one of the ways in which the Canadian movement works towards achieving their goal of eliminating violence against women in all its forms. The Association carries out a major campaign during the YWCA Week without Violence. Throughout the week the Association intensifies their VAW work and encourages individuals and communities to identify realistic and sustainable alternatives to violence. The support and involvement of schools, community organisations, politicians, law enforcement agencies, faith groups and individuals is at the heart of the campaign. The YWCA Week without Violence activities are organised each year so that people are reminded that there are ways through, and out of violence.
YWCA Canada is the country’s only established national networks and the largest single provider of shelter services for women and children leaving domestic abuse. The YWCA has deep roots in the country’s violence against women movement, offering services to approximately 20,000 women each year.