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Women's watch - Bulletin 3
November 25, 2007

News Flash

Today women are celebrating in African countries whose governments have ratified the Protocol to the African Charter on Human and Peoples Rights on the Rights of Women in Africa. It is the Second Anniversary of this Protocol, which directly addresses the condition of African women and represents huge strides in the formalisation of their rights. Zimbabwe has not yet ratified, but next year let us hope that we will be joining women round Africa in these celebrations.

This week’s highlight

Sixteen Days of Activism on Ending Violence Against Women - 25 November to 10 December 2007

The world theme for this year is: “Demanding Implementation, Challenging Obstacles: End Violence Against Women.”

Zimbabwe got off to a head start - early activities included:

14 November: an address on HIV and AIDS and gender-based violence from a cultural perspective

17 November: a workshop in Tongogara refugee camp, Manicaland, on "16 Days of Activism and the role of men in humanitarian settings”

22-23 November: Cyber-dialogues for community members

24 November: Schools Gala: Youth against Gender-Based Violence [GBV] and the spread of HIV and AIDS (poetry, drama, impromptu speeches, song and debates)

The official National Launching Ceremony of the "16 Days of Activism" in Zimbabwe, organised by the Ministry of Women’s Affairs, Gender and Community Development [MoWAGCD] and Gender Forum will be on 30 November at the Harare International Conference Centre, following a march through Harare from 4th Street along Jason Moyo Avenue. All are welcome.

Some of the Highlights of 16 Days of Activism [25 Nov – 10 Dec]

- 25 November 2007 to 25 November 2008 "16 to 365 Days of Activism on Gender Violence" - Provincial Launches - Bulawayo, Harare, Manicaland, Mashonaland Central, Mashonaland East, Mashonaland West, Masvingo, Matabeleland North, Matabeleland South, Midlands [MoWAGCD]

- Teach-ins in workplaces Mhondoro, Musinami area; Tobacco processors, Harare; Lyons Maid, Harare, TelOne, Harare; Nestle Zimbabwe, Harare; Dairyboard, Harare; Air Force; Zimbabwe Republic Police Victim Friendly Unit, Harare Province; Gulliver,

- Radio programmes on Domestic Violence Act [DVA]

- Marches throughout the country including Bulawayo, Masvingo, Mutare, Gweru, Marondera, Bindura, Beitbridge, Kariba

- Gender bus

- Road show

- Zero Tolerance to Violence Against Women campaign launch in Bulawayo

- Digital Storytelling DVD screening followed by face-to-face discussions and cyberdialogues on DVA

- Launch of Baseline Study on Gender Based Violence and HIV and AIDS

- Face-to-face meetings and cyberdialogues on school-girl safety and girl child abuse.

- Face-to-face meetings and cyberdialogues on the role of men and boys in the fight against domestic violence

- Ending Violence Against Women - Drama, Poems, Speeches, Song and Dance

See Programme for more activities, where they are happening and organisations taking part [below]

Journalists Targeted

- Presentation on reporting guidelines on Violence against Women

- Community outreach for journalists/Screening of Violence against Women film

- Journalist are invited to attend and report on all programme activities

In addition to the activities outlined in the programme the Women's Coalition of Zimbabwe, in collaboration with Musasa Project and Zimbabwe Women Lawyers Association, will be holding a series of conventions to identify gaps in the implementation of DVA and map out strategies to overcome these on:

- November 29 - Mutare Provincial Convention on the DVA, Christmas Pass Hotel

- November 30 - Masvingo Provincial Convention on the DVA, Flamboyant Hotel

- December 1 - Gweru Provincial Convention on the DVA, Fairmile Hotel

- December 3 - Marondera Provincial Convention the DVA, venue to be advised.

- December 7 - National Convention on the DVA, Management Training Bureau, Harare (100 women leaders to be invited)

Allied Activities Falling within the 16 days are

- Day Against Child Abuse

- Month Long March against Child Labour in December

- HIV/AIDS Week 26 November to 1 December

- World Aids Day - 1 December

- Human Rights Day - 10 December

Many organisations have combined activities for these days with the 16 Days of Activism to end violence against women:

- From 26 November - 1 December AIDS Week: there will be concerts, drama, breakdancing and movies sponsored by the French Embassy at Prince Edward School 9:30am to 6:30pm daily

- World Aids Day commemoration

- Candlelight memorial

Other allied activities focusing on women

- Award ceremony for "Best Women's Rights Lawyer"

- Film Festival 30 November to 8 December International Images Film Festival for Women [Theme: "Fighting Women"]

There is 10 page full programme of activities.

The full programme of activities to be undertaken by various organisations during the 16 Days of Activism lists many interesting and inspiring events throughout Zimbabwe. It is too long to include in this bulletin, but is worth having [if you would like an electronic version of the full programme please request it from Gender Forum [UNIFEM] ­- or Womens’ Coalition - or Veritas -].

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