Friday will mark the beginning of the international campaign known as the "16 days of activism against women abuse" While I have been meditating upon what this means and how can we change things around us, I have been therapeutically cutting, pinning and creating white ribbons for our women abuse campaign kicking off next week. Yeshua laid it upon my heart some weeks ago to "take it to the streets" - to go out into the public and do something about what is happening in terms of abuse.
The mandate of this campaign is to inform - handing out flyers, helping others through free counseling and offering numbers of places that can help. Along with this however, is the very important task of showing people the need to wear the white ribbon. The white ribbon is a sign of support and the sign of someone saying "I am SAYING NO! to women abuse!" I am saying NO!
People often tell us that we cannot change things - I don't believe it - we can, small steps turn into big steps, which turn into a slow jog, which emulates into a run, which eventually becomes a sprint and then cross country! Until when you look again, you have covered the entire world and you started off with a small step.
I have been pinning ribbons for a few days now each ribbon that I look at, I see a life. I see someone, a life to be touched, a life still to be lived. Abuse victims do not live, they survive; each moment of their lives are scanned sensing for danger or safety and then the interpretation - how to act. The white ribbon represents the colour of purity, of newness of rebirth - the life yet to be lived, still to be had. Each ribbon represents the hope, the hope that a victim can be made free. Each ribbon is a life, each life is a gift.
Along with the lives that I see, I also see stars. Alice Paul and Lucy Burns sewed stars onto the suffragette flag each time a new state agreed to allow women to vote. A star for a state, a star representing liberation and equality, a star for freedom. Each ribbon I see, I see the same stars. Alice Paul envisioned not only a country but a world where equality for all sexes would be an inalienable right and I hope for the same.
May these 16 days of activism not pass us by...rather allow yourself to reach out, embrace it; take it by the hand and find help for yourself or for another - we can, God can - we just need to reach out!