Men urged to stand up to violence against women and girls

Men in Haringey are being urged to stand with women to end violence against women and girls (VAWG).

As we mark the 16 days of Action against Gender Violence, which starts on the UN International Day of Elimination of Violence against Women (Saturday November 25), we are calling on men to come forward as White Ribbon Ambassadors for the borough.

The White Ribbon Campaign is part of a global movement to put a stop to male violence against women and girls - writes haringey.gov.uk.

Ten men in Haringey have already signed up to be ambassadors and are helping to spread the message that it is everybody’s responsibility to end abuse.

This month Haringey Council was awarded the White Ribbon Local Authority Award in recognition of our partnership work with people across the community to end VAWG.

A number of events will take place across the borough for the 16 Days of Action, including a celebration of our White Ribbon Local Authority Award on November 30 at Tottenham Town Hall.

The event will include performances from Farida Momtaz, an Asian British writer and poet, performance artist Lemar Barret aka The Animated Poet, singer Walton McLaren and dancers from Haringey Sixth Form and North London YMCA.

Students from Sir Thomas More school will be talking about why the White Ribbon campaign is so important before Haringey is officially awarded the White Ribbon Local Authority Award by Ikram Butt, former Rugby League player and representative of White Ribbon UK.

Haringey Council Cabinet Member for Communities Cllr Eugene Ayisi said:

“We currently have 10 men who have come forward as ambassadors but many more are needed. Ambassadors play an important role encouraging people to pledge not to commit, condone, or remain silent about abuse.

“We want people from all backgrounds across our borough to join together and support us however they can to end violence against women and girls.”

White Ribbon ambassadors have training to support them in their role and are tasked with inspiring and informing people through talks, community events and social media.

Stuart Cox is chair of the borough’s White Ribbon Steering Group and a White Ribbon Ambassador. He said: “For me this was an opportunity to do something positive and look at ways I could help bring men and boys into this work.

I have worked closely with the Haringey Council organising a launch event that was held at Alexandra Palace in March, developing the campaign and planning how we can use social media as well as recruiting other male ambassadors.”

The ‘16 Days of Action against Gender Violence’ runs from November 25, UN International Day of Elimination of Violence against Women to December 10, UN Human Rights Day.

If you’d like become an ambassador, or you want to find out more about Haringey’s White Ribbon campaign, email [email protected] .

Register for your place at our white ribbon celebration (external link).

Ambassador case study

Stuart Cox is head of participation at Jacksons Lane Theatre in Highgate and oversees outreach work with communities including circus workshops, plays and heritage projects. He is also chair of the Haringey White Ribbon Steering Group.

Stuart said: “In my role at Jacksons Lane I had been closely involved with two projects that looked in different ways at violence against women and girls. One was a project around self-defence and another engaged the community through theatre.

I was very struck by just what a massive issue this is. In one of our projects the women involved said that they wanted men to be a part of the conversation about it, so for me this was an opportunity to do something positive and look at ways I could help bring men and boys into this work.

I have received some very powerful training delivered by Haringey Council, attended meetings in the community and been involved in creating ways for others to raise awareness of the campaign. One of the moments I especially enjoyed was working with a group of young people who were doing the National Citizen Service programme and encouraging them to include the white ribbon message in their social action campaign.

I have worked closely with the Haringey VAWG team who are amazing for their commitment to the cause. We have worked together organising a launch event that was held at Alexandra Palace, planning how we can use social media and recruiting other male ambassadors. I also enjoyed chairing the meetings because everyone has been so positive.”

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