Today, Human Rights Day, marks the final day of the 16 Days of Activism against gender based violence campaign but it does not mean our fight is over! We must continuously work beyond the days of these dedicated campaigns and work towards a world free of violence against women and girls. Our WDP sisters from around the world are taking lessons learned from the worship services and applying them to real life situations in order to promote awareness for the betterment of women and children. These following stories were taken from the 2016 & 2017 Journals.
In 2016, WDP Malaysia reflected on the theme “Receive children, Receive me” and thought about the refugee children in their country being denied their rights to an education. They affirmed in their service “that all children should be received equally, regardless of their sex or status, and education is very important for the future of refugee children.”
Similarly, Bulgaria highlighted the difficulties Roma children experience in their country as opposed to other children. Their main concern is to “make education accessible to them so they may have a better future.”
In Latin America this year, Argentina “vowed to work towards defending the rights of women and, above all, to combat gender [based] violence,” and Cuba renewed leadership with young woman engaging in the coordination of WDP and with this they will be able to more actively “promote campaigns for NO violence against children, and will use art to reach out to families in vulnerable situations.”
Panama used the 2017 theme of “Am I Being Unfair to You?” as an opportunity to bring awareness to the injustices faced by many woman. They created a game to show the inequality of wealth distributed and how the minority usually suffers the most. They used chairs to represent possessions and gave “the man” most of the chairs while those without chairs had to stand. It really impacted their service and it shows us how we must work together to fight establishments like this that oppress women and young girls.
As we celebrate this Advent season, we must remember all of the things Jesus has taught us through these WDP worship services. We must listen to Jesus’ words and help each other, not just one day, but every single day until the end of gender based violence.