Vimukti celebrated International Day for the Elimination of Violence against Women: Vimukti Pothnal

“Not all of us can do great things. But we can do small things with great love.”
Vimukti Charitable Trust® Pothnal organized the program on International Day for the Elimination of Violence against Women in collaboration with Ensemble Agissons, France on 25th of November at its premises. The Resource Person highlighted saying, Violence against women and girls is a global issue. It remains one of the most persistent human rights violations and a threat to millions of girls and women. Violence against women and girls knows no social, economic or national boundaries. It affects women of all ages and arises in various types of settings – taking many forms including physical, sexual or psychological violence, as well as economic abuse and exploitation. At least one out of every three women worldwide has been beaten, coerced into sex or emotionally abused in her lifetime, most often by a partner. As we mark the International Day for the Elimination of Violence against Women, we commemorate and renew our global commitment to ending violence against women and other forms of gender-based violence. Violence against women remains one of the most persistent violations of human rights across the globe, undermining the health, dignity, security and autonomy of women and girls. Women who have been physically or sexually abused by their partners report higher rates of mental health issues, including depression and anxiety, higher use of alcohol and less control over sexual decision-making.

There is an undeniable link between violence against women and HIV. Studies show clearly that women living with HIV are more likely to have experienced violence, and women who have experienced violence are more likely to be living with HIV. In some regions, women who experience physical or sexual intimate partner violence are 1.5 times more likely to acquire HIV than women who have not experienced violence. Among marginalized populations, a high prevalence of violence is linked to higher rates of HIV infection, in particular among transgender women. Violence or the fear of violence can it make very difficult for women to insist on safer sex and to use and benefit from HIV and sexual and reproductive health services. The fear of intimate partner violence is also an important barrier to the uptake of HIV testing and counselling, to the disclosure of HIV-positive status and to treatment uptake and adherence, including among pregnant women living with HIV. Violence against women living with HIV also manifests in health-care settings—women have even reported being sterilized against their will.

Fr. Sathish Fernandes VCT , Director said Violence against women continues to be an obstacle to achieving equality, development, peace as well as to the fulfillment of women and girls’ human rights. All in all, the promise of the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) - to leave no one behind - cannot be fulfilled without putting an end to violence against women and girls. The Ensemble Agissons members namely Mr. Daniel Helbert, President, Mrs. Bernadette, Mr. Marcel, Mrs. Lucie, Mr. Eric, Mrs. Patricia, Miss. Swathi PGB bank secretary, Mr. Nagarathana Staff nurse and 120 women and VCT staff participated and benefited from this program.

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