Dear Colleagues

It is a very negative reflection of global society that at the dawn of the 21st Century violence against women is increasing throughout the world.  It is a scourge that preys on women and girls of ALL nations, of ALL cultures Gender-based violence is the social, psychological and economic subordination of women and occurs in all societies. 

The problem is of such a worrying scale that a few years ago the United Nations selected the twenty-fifth of November as the special UN International Day for the Elimination of Violence Against Women.  The UN General Assembly invited Governments, the relevant agencies, bodies, funds and programs of the United Nations system, and other international organizations and non-governmental organizations, to organize on that day, activities designed to raise public awareness of the problem of violence against women.  This Bulletin includes a Briefing Note on the history of this special day.

The 25th November also marks the beginning of the 2002 CAUCASUS 16 DAYS of Activism Against Gender Violence.  Many colleagues from the CAUCASUS 16 DAYS NGO members and media throughout the region have very generously been volunteering a great deal of energy and time planning events for the 2002 16 Days Campaign. Events include free legal, medical and psychological consultations, seminars, exhibitions and conferences in Baku, Tbilisi and Yerevan. The Calendar of Events is being circulated and is available upon request and from the CAUCASUS 16 DAYS official website (English and Russian):


A rousing vote of thanks is sent to members of all three National Coordination Committees and Media Advocacy Groups as well our National Focal Point partners in Armenia and Azerbaijan.  The volunteers who agree to be the National Focal Point in each country bear a huge responsibility as they undertake the task of co-ordinating the national arrangements in each country. They cannot be thanked enough for their dedication and commitment to achieve change.  BUT…we can try!  So a BIG thank you to ALL Focal Point colleagues and especially Anahit Tevosyan of Tatev-98 in Armenia, Rena Tahirova, Pervana Mamedova of YUVA and Taman Japharova, Women with University Education in Azerbaijan and Diana Tsirunova & Nana Kakabadze working in the WomenAid International Caucasus Regional Focal Point office in Tbilisi.

We also greatly appreciate the dedication of all Local Coordination Partners (LCPs) who are organising events in the regions of each country.  Special thanks also to Alla Gamakharia and colleagues of Humanitarian Fund Sukhumi, Kutaisi and colleagues of Azerbaijan Young Lawyers Association,(AYLU), Baku – both organisations are participating members of the Georgian and Azeri National Coordination Committees and successfully attracted funding for activities supporting this years CAUCASUS 16 DAYS campaign.  We hope that as the CAUCASUS 16 DAYS campaign grows each year even more participating members will be successful in attracting funds for a range of activities. 

Of course nothing could be achieved without the support of donors and all three Coordination Committees are grateful to Open Society Institute for providing some financial support to the campaign in all three countries this year.  WomenAid International is pleased to be supporting this regional programme and to see it grow year on year.  CAUCASUS 16 DAYS is a very positive example of civil society cooperation and leadership and is now inspiring similar action in other regions of the world.  Never forget that it is three countries in the Caucasus that are leading the way!

Pida Ripley, Founder WomenAid International

For further information contact the Caucasus 16 Days Focal Point:

WomenAid International-Caucasus:

17 Khvichia St. Tbilisi 380060 Georgia Tel/Fax: (995 32) 37 92 70


CIS 16 Days ~ CaucasusNOW

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