The Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of Discrimination against Women (CEDAW), adopted in 1979 by the UN General Assembly, is often described as an international bill of rights for women. However, worldwide today, 603 million women live in countries where domestic violence is not yet considered a crime; up to 70% of women in the world report having experienced physical and/or sexual violence; up to 50% of sexual assaults are committed against girls under the age of 16; over 60 million girls worldwide are married before the age of 18….
The theme of this year International Women’s Day (8 March) ’A promise is a promise: Time for action to end violence against women’ seeks to strengthen international community’s commitment to put an end to violence against women. The UN also organizes UNiTE campaign, calling on all governments, civil society, women’s organisations, men, young people, the private sector, the media, etc. to join forces in addressing this global issue. [UN]
Pray for women vulnerable to violence:
Pray for God’s protection and deliverance to them;
Pray that international society will face up to all forms of violence and discrimination against women and secure the rights and safety of women by legislation, enforcement, education, social network and assistance, etc.
Though the number of farmers committing suicide in India has decreased, there were still 228 farmer suicide cases alone in Vidarbha region of Maharashtra (Mumbai also in this province) in 10 months ended 31 Jan 2013. Reasons for farmers’ suicide include mounting debts and those connected to farming conditions such as drought and flood. Some desperate, debt-burdened farmers in an adjacent province Andhra Pradesh even sold their kidneys to raise loans. The Indian government has devised some assistance/aid schemes such as Agricultural Debt Waiver and Debt Relief Scheme (ADWDRS) since 2008. However, an Indian well known journalist, especially on reporting peasant suicides in India, said that Indian society has become more unequal than ever and farm loan waiver was designed to fail. Farm credits were disbursed more in urban Mumbai than in rural Maharashtra. Most of the farmers who committed suicide were those who took loans from private lenders. [OneWorld, the Hindu]
Pray for farmers in India:
Pray that depressed farmers will have social assistance and supporting network, to help them face the desperate situations;
Pray for better design on the official agricultural debt waiver and debt relief scheme to fix the need of rural farmers.
[ePrayer – Pray for peace and safety in Bangladesh]
At least 48 persons were killed and thousand others were injured in clashes in Bangladesh at a strike called over due to a death sentence given to an Islamist party leader on charges including murder, rape and torture during the war of independence in 1971 on 28 February. The main targets of the Jammat Shibir (Islamic student organisation) are the minority communities specially the Hindus as well as law enforcers. The Jammat Shibir set fire on vehicles and train, pulled out railway slippers in many part of the country. Two field workers belong to one of our local partners were stopped by Jamaat Shibir activists while they were on their way to field visit. The activist asked them to stop working for Christian NGO and to join them to save the Islam. Our local partner has asked all field staffs to take extra pre-caution during the field visit.
Pray for peace and safety in Bangladesh:
Pray for God’s protection over to the target groups, i.e. the Hindus minority community and the law enforcers;
Pray for the safety of frontline workers from our local partners in Bangladesh and other NGOs, and that our partners will have wisdom to spread the love of God and message of reconciliation in the midst of a hostile environment.
Pray for the peace talk between the Islamic groups and the government of Bangladesh.
[ePrayer – Pray for ending violence against women in Pakistan]
On 1 and 2 March 2013 CEDAR’s partner CGDC organised a National Conference on SAY No to Violence Against Women and thank God it went very productive and fruitful. 30 delegates from 3 provinces participated in the conference. Theme tracks were: What Bible Says about Domestic Abuse, Understanding Domestic Violence, Do’s and Don’ts for supporting a victim and dealing with perpetrators, Emotional Health in Families and Christian Family Life. All delegates went back with work plans and will share the learning with other staff at work. CGDC plans to keep in touch with all delegates and also supports innovative ideas to SAY No to Violence Against Women.
Pray for ending violence against women in Pakistan:
Pray for follow up work and documentation after the conference;
Pray that delegates can effectively bring awareness to their churches, NGOs and communities, and to initiate action plan on ending violence against women in their societies.