Women and men united
to end violence
against women and girls
"All of us – men and women, soldiers and peacekeepers, citizens and leaders – have a responsibility to help end violence against women. States must honour their commitments to prevent violence, bring perpetrators to justice and provide redress to victims. And each of us must speak out in our families, workplaces and communities, so that acts of violence against women cease."
Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon
Academy Award-winning actress and activist Charlize Theron (South Africa/United States) has been designated by United Nations Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon as a United Nations Messenger of Peace with a special focus on ending violence against women.
In February 2008, United Nations Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon launched his campaign, “UNite to End Violence against Women,” a multi-year effort aimed at preventing and eliminating violence against women and girls in all parts of the world.
In recognition of the urgent need to bring women and men together in this endeavour, the theme of this year’s International Women’s Day – which falls on 8 March but will be observed with a number of United Nations activities on 5 March – is Women and Men United to End Violence against Women and Girls. Dating back nearly a century, Women’s Day provides an opportunity to pay tribute to the achievements of women and to highlight the needs and concerns of women on the national, regional and global agenda. This year, the Day provides an opportunity to call women and men everywhere to action by shining a spotlight on the issue of violence against women and the goals of the Secretary-General’s campaign.