RCASA Friday Facts: White Ribbon Campaign

In Outreach, Sexual Assault Awareness on April 9, 2010 at 12:30 am

There is an urge in society to speak out about men’s violence against women (VAW).  The White Ribbon Campaign (WRC) has taken the initiative to engage men and has in fact become the largest in the world to end VAW. Many questions that are posed about this campaign inquire about, what the WRC involves and how can it be accomplished.

Five Pillars consist of:

  • Challenging everyone to speak out, and think about their own beliefs, language and actions.
  • Educating young people, especially young men and boys, on the issue through the educational resources we produce.
  • Raising public awareness of the issue.
  • Working in partnership with women’s organizations, the corporate sector, the media and other partners to create a future with no violence against women.
  • Supporting White Ribbon Campaigns around with our experience, resources and networks.

A common question that arises from campaigning for this cause inherently involves who is being blamed.  Occasionally men who encounter the WRC feel that the meaning defines men as bad individuals.  However,  supporters of the WRC do not think that men are naturally violent and don’t think that men are bad, however they do think all men have roles and responsibilities in ending violence against women.  As much as men are apart of this campaign, and often are led exclusively by men and aimed at boys and young men, women  are encouraged to participate and take leadership roles and often do!

You can witness this first hand effort at the University of Mary Washington in Fredericksburg, Va formerly an all girls school until the early 1970’s.   The WRC takes place on campus annually every spring during the first week of April, lead by the Student Anti-Violence Educators.

First hand efforts across college campuses have continued this campaign and the tradition of wearing a white ribbon continues to symbolize men’s opposition to violence against women.


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