Anglicans around the Communion are getting involved in prayer, reflection and action for the 16 Days of Activism against gender-based violence. The campaign runs from Nov. 25, International Day for the Elimination of Violence against Women, to Human Rights Day on Dec. 10. The annual campaign sprang from the first Women’s Global Leadership Institute in 1991. (Read full article here.) According to World Health Organization research, 35 per cent of women worldwide have experienced either physical and/or sexual violence.
In our companion Diocese of Buyé, the Mothers’ Union organized a walk through Ngozi town to mark 16 Days of Activism on November 29. The Rev. Dominiquw Ciza, Buyé Diocesan Secretary reports that the celebration was led by the Most Rev. Blaise Martin Nyaboho, Archbishop of the Anglican Church in Burundi, and the Rt. Rev. Sixbert Macumi, Bishop of Buyé. The Provincial Secretary of Buyé Mothers’ Union and Mothers’ Union representatives from all the dioceses were present. People marched for almost two km and then participated in a ceremony on the Ngozi playground, which included speeches, testimonies and the lighting of candles.
The program concluded with a special presentation of 60 bikes to the Mothers’ Union cycles facilitators. The bikes will assist Mothers’ Union members with their ministry of helping alleviate poverty, addressing gender inequality and gender based violence, and raising awareness of women’s rights and entitlements. In addition, Mothers’ Union is helping with programs for improving infant and maternal health, a better awareness of HIV/AIDS, the opportunity for girls as well as boys to access education, and assistance for the vulnerable and needy.
In his speech, Archbishop Nyaboho said “the Anglican Church of Burundi, since it was established in the country in 1935, has always acted to fight against human indignity that includes gender based violence. The Church is more than ever committed to end violence in all its forms. To that end 126 persons from the Anglican Church have recently been trained on how to address gender based violence (GBV) issues.”