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Shetland Rape Crisis sheds light on gender-based violence during annual 16 Days of Activism Campaign

Shetland Rape Crisis is preparing for our biggest 16 Days of Activism Campaign yet, beginning on Thursday 21st November, four days before the official launch of the global campaign, and running up until Tuesday 10th December. This year’s 16 Days will be under the motto of #OrangetheWorld and #GenerationEquality.

During this year’s events the service, which provides free and confidential information, support, and advocacy to anyone in Shetland (regardless of gender, age, race, ability and more) affected by sexual violence, has partnered with other Scottish organizations to undertake a number of activities, including showing a travelling exhibition, facilitating a professional training day, running social media campaigns and more.

As one of the main events, Shetland Rape Crisis is hosting Zero Tolerance’s travelling photography exhibition Violence Unseen, depicting underrepresented forms of violence against women, from November 21st all the way through to December 10th at different locations throughout Shetland.

Working with award-winning photographer Alicia Bruce, the photographs were created in collaboration with groups and individuals affected by violence including People First (Scotland), Diane Abbott MP, Shakti Women’s Aid, Rape Crisis Scotland, equality campaigner Mridul Wadhwa, journalist Vonny Moyes and the Women’s Support Project. The Violence Unseen exhibition aims to encourage members of the public to stop and consider the true impact of violence against all women.

Rachel Adamson, Co-Director of Zero Tolerance, said:While women across every segment of society experience men’s violence, women from certain groups are even more at risk. These forms of violence often remain unacknowledged and unchallenged which is why Violence Unseen is so important.”

A spokesperson from People First said: “We know that more women with disabilities, including learning disability, are abused more than other women. That doesn’t mean we should hide away and it doesn’t mean that we should put up with it. We need to raise our expectations and make sure we are treated in a way that we deserve to be.” - Spokesperson from People First.

At the public exhibition opening event on Thursday 21st November at 6pm in Mareel, SRC will also launch its first annual report for 2017/18, showing the work done by the organisation in the local community throughout the course of its first year as a fully independent charity.

As well as this, SRC is partnering with Rape and Abuse Service Highland (RASASH) who will deliver training on ending abuse against young people with learning disabilities called No More!, developed in conjunction with advocacy groups including Health & Happiness and People First,to professionals in Shetland working in this area.

In addition to these main events, Shetland Rape Crisis hopes to raise funds for the service by holding a bag-packing at Lerwick Coop on December 7th from 10am to 5pm and is offering collection points for donating bras and pants to the Scottish charity Smalls for All at the Why Waste? Zero Waste Shop in Lerwick, Aith Charity Shop, Dunrossness School and Unst school and leisure centre.

And there will also be the annual a social media campaign on Facebook, Instagram and Twitter, highlighting both national and local demand for the service, and an awareness-raising display at Market House.

Lavinia Schmidt, Activism Worker at Shetland Rape Crisis, said: “This year’s theme #GenerationEquality is incredibly fitting for what we are seeing in Shetland. While many rape myths are still prevalent in the communities, young people are pursuing what they think is right, no matter whether this is fighting for gender equality, LGBTQ+ rights or enabling measures counteracting climate change. It is great to see this, and we hope that this spark can be kept alight and ignited further.”

Thu 21st Nov, 6pm Public exhibition launch at Mareel

Thu 21st - Sun 24th Nov Exhibition showing at Mareel

Wed 28th – Sun 1st Dec Exhibition showing at Sumburgh Airport

Thu 5th - Tue 10th Dec Exhibition taken down from Hillswick Wildlife Sanctuary

Zero Tolerance is a Scottish charity working to end men’s violence against women by promoting gender equality and by challenging attitudes which normalise violence and abuse. Find out more about Zero Tolerance on our website: http://www.zerotolerance.org.uk/

Please note that some of the content in the exhibition deals with sexual violence, abuse and exploitation which some people might find upsetting.

The photographer for this exhibition was Alicia Bruce. You can find out more about her work here: https://aliciabruce.co.uk/

This exhibition was carried out with the help and expertise of People First (Scotland), Women’s Support Project, Shakti Women's Aid and Rape Crisis Scotland as well as individuals.

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