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Relay to end violence against women launches in the UK

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Harri Sutherland-Kay
WVoN co-editor 

The UK’s National White Ribbon Relay is kicking off in Portsmouth tomorrow.

The relay, which will see a baton being passed throughout the country, runs from 23 June – 26 July and aims to raise awareness around the relationship between violence against women and girls and major sporting events, such as Euro 2012 and the Olympic Games.

White Ribbon is a global campaign to ensure that men take more responsibility for reducing the level of violence against women.

Chris Hancox, the National Campaign Manager for White Ribbon UK said that the Relay “is an excellent way of bringing people together to stand up against violence against women and girls.

“We expect it, and the many different local events associated with it, will help raise awareness of this widespread issue that blights many people’s lives and is still largely a taboo subject. Any initiative like this is really welcome. Well done to our Portsmouth supporters for organising it!”

The relay has been organised by the Portsmouth White Ribbon Group in partnership with local frontline service providers, Aurora New Dawn, and national advocacy organisation Standing Together Against Domestic Violence.

“As a national organisation, we are always pleased to work with our partners to raise awareness about violence against women,” said Sally Jackson, partnership manager for Standing Together.

“This campaign takes the message to the heart of communities around Great Britain and encourages local people to pledge not to commit, condone or remain silent about violence against women – that would be a legacy to be proud of!”

During the month long event, a White Ribbon Relay baton will travel to more than 20 towns and cities across Great Britain. At each stopping point a special event will be held to raise awareness about violence against women and girls. These will include events with the North Wales Women’s Centre Choir in Conwy and Denbighshire, with a group of fathers in Newcastle and conclude with Cultural Olympiad’s micro nation, Nowhere Island, in Weymouth.

Following the Relay launch in Portsmouth, the baton will meander its way north to Newcastle before completing its last leg around London.  The baton will be passed back to organisers, Portsmouth White Ribbon Group, by the Office of the Mayor of London at a special event at City Hall on 23 July, 2012.

You can follow the exploits of the baton on Twitter and Facebook.

To take the White Ribbon pledge, please click here.

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