Creating Futures Without Violence Worldwide

Global Prevention on Violence Against Women

"We know that violence against women compounds the enormous social and economic toll on families, communities, even whole nations.”

“And we know that when we work to eradicate violence against women, we empower our greatest resource for development: mothers raising children; law-makers in parliament; chief executives, negotiators, teachers; doctors, policewomen, peacekeepers and more.”

-Ban Ki-moon, Secretary-General, The United Nations

Ending Violence Against Women

On February 25, 2008, United Nations Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon launched the global campaign, UNiTE to End Violence Against Women, because, he said, this violence is a gross violation of human rights that is impeding women’s participation in social, political and economic life and hindering economic development worldwide. The UN campaign is designed to address the appalling conditions that women endure, especially during conflicts and crises. The Secretary-General timed it to culminate in 2015, so that it would coincide with the target date for the Millennium Development Goals.

The Secretary-General made clear in his statement what Futures Without Violence, formerly Family Violence Prevention Fund, and thousands of activists and researchers around the world, have been saying for years – that ending violence against women is essential if we are to live peacefully together and bring development, health and prosperity to nations and communities around the globe. He called on all nations to prioritize and dedicate resources to this task, while committing the UN to a bold effort focused on an agenda that Futures Without Violence already has begun advancing in partnership with local organizations worldwide.

The UN took a vital step towards accelerating the progress Member States were making towards gender equality and women’s empowerment by establishing the United Nations Entity for Gender Equality and the Empowerment of Women — or UN Women — on July 2, 2010. This new body brings together four formerly distinct UN entities: Division for the Advancement of Women (DAW), International Research and Training Institute for the Advancement of Women (INSTRAW), Office of the Special Adviser on Gender Issues and Advancement of Women (OSAGI), and United Nations Development Fund for Women (UNIFEM). On September 14, 2010, the UN appointed Her Excellency, Michelle Bachelet, the former President of Chile and a long time champion of women’s rights, as the Executive Director and Under-Secretary-General of UN Women. 

Past International Involvement

In an effort to reach out to colleagues globally and engage them in a common vision to end the maltreatment of women and children, Futures Without Violence launched its work with the United Nations World Conference on Human Rights in 1993, and the United Nations World Conference on Women in Beijing in 1995. Since then, Futures Without Violence has established partnerships with activists in China, India, México, Russia, and others countries, and continues to cultivate alliances to address all forms of violence.

Maternal Mortality

Futures Without Violence had the great privilege of working with two outstanding organizations in México. In partnership with Asesoria, Capacitación y Asistencia en Salud and Grupo de Estudios Sobre la Mujer Rosario Castellanos, Futures Without Violence has created and implemented innovative tools for the reduction of maternal mortality and morbidity; focusing on the unique roles played by traditional indigenous midwives, healthcare providers, and others in the social service sectors in the prevention, detection and intervention of family violence. The documentation of tools created and lessons learned over the four-year partnership have all been compiled on an online toolkit to be used by people working on issues of family violence and maternal morbidity and mortality around the world. Access the toolkit.

Coaching Boys into Men Internationally

In 2007, Futures Without Violence proudly joined with The United Nations Children's Fund (UNICEF) to introduce a collaborative effort with the Fédération Internationale de Football Association (FIFA). The partnership produced a new version of the Coaching Boys into Men Playbook, one that is specifically designed for use by soccer coaches worldwide. The manual was published in three official FIFA languages (English, Spanish and French), distributed in more than 150 countries, and translated into Portuguese and Italian by local program offices. 

CurrentlFutures Without Violence is currently conducting the most extensive international adaptation of CBIM. Taking place in Mumbai, India this CBIM adaptation is called “Parivartan”, or “Change” in Hindi. Unlike our domestic CBIM program, which was not intended to be sport‐specific, Parivartan focuses on the extremely popular sport of cricket. Whether cricket, basketball, or soccer all coaches can play a pivotal role in guiding adolescents by becoming positive adult role models for these young men. The Parivartan program explores the potential that cricket coaches have to use their influence effectively to talk to adolescent boys, between the ages of 10‐16, and to teach them that violence does not equal strength. Learn more about Parivartan.

International Violence Against Women Act (I-VAWA)

Seven years ago, Futures Without Violence began a campaign to engage concerned Americans on U.S. foreign policies, activities and resources that have the potential to end and prevent violence against women and girls worldwide. Futures Without Violence envisions this campaign as a vehicle to underscore the importance of eliminating violence as a key strategy toward promoting the economic, social, and political status of women and girls worldwide; thereby, advancing efforts toward building civil and stable societies.

Futures Without Violence, with its campaign partners, Amnesty International USA and Women Thrive Worldwide, was proud to preside over the introduction of a joint effort in support of ground breaking legislation to combat the global crisis of violence against women and girls for the first time during the 110th Congress. With input and support from more than 150 U.S. based experts and forty women’s groups overseas, Futures Without Violence and its partners worked with then U.S. Senator, now Vice President Joseph Biden (D-DE), Senator Richard Lugar (R-IN) and Representative Howard Berman (D-CA) to draft the International Violence Against Women Act (I-VAWA). I-VAWA is a bill that would, for the first time, systematically integrate efforts to end gender –based violence (GBV) into foreign assistance programs, applying the force of U.S. diplomacy and foreign aid to prevent the abuse and exploitation that affects up to one in three women worldwide.

On February 4, 2010, during the 111th Congress, the International Violence Against Women Act (S.2982/ H.R.4594) was reintroduced with strong bi-partisan support simultaneously in the Senate and the House of Representatives. The lead sponsors in the Senate and House were Senators John Kerry (D-MA), Barbara Boxer (D-CA), Olympia Snowe (R-ME) and Susan Collins (R-ME ) and Representatives Bill Delahunt (D-MA), Ted Poe (R-TX) and Jan Schakowsky (D-IL) respectively. By the end of the session, one third of Members in both the Senate and House had cosponsored the I-VAWA. The energy behind the movement to prevent and respond to violence against women and girls culminated in a successful Senate Foreign Relations Committee mark-up on December 14, 2010, where I-VAWA passed without any amendments. Unfortunately, the 111th Congress recessed shortly thereafter, allowing no time for either chamber to bring the bill to the floor for a vote.

Although IVAWA did not come up for a floor vote in the 111th Congress, the bill made significant progress -- moving farther along in the legislative process than ever before and building a groundswell of congressional support in Congress and in the Administration for ending violence against women and girls, both at home and abroad. The Administration and congressional allies, namely Representatives Ted Poe (R-TX) and Jan Schakowsky (D-IL), in the 112th Congress are committed to ending violence against women and girls and planning to re-introduce the bill this year.

For additional information and to find out how you can support the I-VAWA, please register for updates and read more about what I-VAWA means worldwide.

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