On Friday, 25th of November last, Roscommon Women’s Network took part in the national moment of remembrance where 209 candles were lit to commemorate the women and children who died in Ireland through violence since 1996.
This marked the start of the 16 Days of Action Opposing Violence Against Women Campaign which runs until 10th of December. “This is an important opportunity to raise awareness and call for changes at an international, national and local level to make women and children safe from abuse” explained Maria Harris, Development Worker at RWN.
Each of the names of those who died since 1996 were read out by staff, volunteers and the general public in a simple yet moving ceremony.
This ceremony is part of the Women’s Aid campaign that challenges the victim-blaming culture that surrounds domestic violence and brings to the fore women’s voices.
Maria explained that “During these 16 days of action we will build better awareness and understanding of the complex nature of domestic violence in our communities and online.”
In addition to this raising awareness around domestic abuse, Roscommon Women’s Network is doing an online facebook campaign where someone is photographed with a fact around domestic abuse each day for the 16 days.
Summing up the event, Maria explained: “Domestic abuse supports are on offer to those in need by ringing Women’s Aid on 1800 341900 or Safelink on 071 9664200. They are holding an open day on Thursday, December 8th (today) as part of the same campaign.”