Excerpts from Zonta International's statement on the International Day of Zero Tolerance for Female Genital Mutilation
Female genital mutilation/cutting comprises all procedures that involve altering or injuring the female genitalia for non-medical reasons and is recognized internationally as a violation of the human rights, health and integrity of girls and women.
The International Day of Zero Tolerance for Female Genital Mutilation seeks to amplify and direct the efforts on the elimination of this practice. This year's theme is "No Time for Global Inaction, Unite, Fund, and Act to End Female Genital Mutilation."
Though Zonta International does not currently support any projects directly related to female genital mutilation, we are committed to ending violence against women and girls in all forms, around the world.
You can read Zonta International's full statement here.
As the world faces the COVID-19 pandemic, instances of gender-based violence are on the rise. Now, more than ever, it is essential that we work together to end violence against women and girls. Through the Zonta Says NO to Violence Against Women campaign, Zonta clubs around the world are uniting to raise their voices to bring awareness to this issue and advocate on behalf of gender-based violence survivors.
Zonta International and Zonta International Foundation
Human Trafficking Survivor Backpack Project
Human trafficking is the fastest growing criminal enterprise in the world. Women and girls are overwhelmingly the victims of sex trafficking. Zonta International USA Caucus in connection with the United Nations is working to end human trafficking. Our club is contributing locally by working with local law enforcement to support survivors of human trafficking. This project will provide backpacks full of personal comfort items that will be distributed by law enforcement crisis responders to rescued human trafficking survivors.
Promoting justice and universal respect for human rights and fundamental freedoms
Zonta International objectives state that we will promote justice and universal respect for human rights and fundamental freedoms, at the International and local levels. Violence against women and girls occurs at an alarming rate in communities across the globe. One out of three women will experience physical and/or sexual violence by a partner or sexual violence by a non-partner violence against women. To bring awareness to the issue of Domestic Violence in our community we participate in the “Zonta Says No Campaign, in collaboration with the SCV Domestic Violence Center. The 16 days of Advocacy are held annually from November 25, December 10.
Red Dress Campaign
Since 2016 the “Zonta Says NO to Violence Against Women” campaign has included a display of seven red dresses around Santa Clarita to symbolize seven women who have lost their lives, in one year, to domestic violence in Santa Clarita. The dresses are displayed outdoors, in public places, where they become animated by the wind and weather. A haunting and inescapable symbol of bloodshed in of our community. Residents can see these dresses at many locations throughout the City. The locations are posted in November.
These bright red symbols are meant to remind us of the reality of domestic violence – it may seem like a private matter, but it is happening in our neighborhoods to our fellow residents and cannot be ignored. We must all strive to be “up-standers, and not bystanders,” meaning we all need to speak up if we see or hear of domestic and family violence happening. Educational materials are available in English and Spanish. This program is in cooperation with the Domestic Violence Program of the Child and Family Center and the City of Santa Clarita.
SCV Domestic Violence Court Advocacy
For almost ten years, Zontians in our club have been part of an ongoing program to become Domestic Violence Court Advocates to help local victims of domestic violence in cooperation with the Child & Family Center's Domestic Violence Program. Court Advocates write Temporary Restraining Orders and assists victims with the legal process and court appearances. This advocacy program empowers local domestic violence victims by preparing the restraining order and paperwork in a comfortable non-threatening setting and helping them to be ready to present in court.