Ha Noi, 30 November 2011 - The Love Journey, a social media campaign aimed at preventing gender-based violence through interaction with youth, will begin accepting idea submissions on December 4 from individuals at www.htyt.vn. The campaign will promote discussions and activity amongst youth on the attitudes and behaviours of caring and respectful relationships, and will link romantic love and friendship with gender equality and non-violence.
Well-known rock musician and outspoken advocate of gender equality, Pham Anh Khoa, supports and is participating in the campaign: “I do believe respect, trust, understanding, love, equality and non-violence are key principles of a healthy relationship. There is no place for force and violence in love. True friends listen to and respect each other’s opinions. We (both men and women) should work towards making our relationships healthy,” said Pham Anh Khoa.
The contest will award Ipads and trips to Bangkok to visit the regional UN headquarters for winning ideas that promote gender equality and non-violence in intimate relationships.
Benjamin Swanton, the Joint Campaign for Prevention of Domestic Violence (JCC) Project Manager from Paz y Desarrollo who is coordinating the campaign said: “The Love Journey takes a new approach to prevention of gender-based violence and promotion of gender equality in Vietnam. Instead of telling people to not perpetrate violence, we are focusing on encouraging positive, gender-equitable and non-violent attitudes among youth, who are still forming their ideas about gender relations and what it means to be a man and a woman. This activity will help young people to build relationship skills that they can take into adult life,”
Speaking on the subject of the global Unite campaign, Ban Ki-Moon, Secretary General of the United Nations, said: “We must engage all of society – and especially young people. In particular, young men and boys must be encouraged to become the advocates we need. We need to promote healthy models of masculinity. Too many young men still grow up surrounded by outmoded male stereotypes. By talking to friends and peers about violence against women and girls, and by taking action to end it, they can help break the ingrained behaviour of generations,”
Bruce Campbell, UNFPA Representative in Vietnam, echoing Ban Ki-Moon’s statement about the need to involve men and boys, said: “More needs to be done to persuade men and boys to accept their role in preventing violence and in protecting and respecting women. Men have a critical role to play: women alone cannot end domestic violence; it must be done in partnership by all of us,”
The Love Journey social media campaign is supported by organizations dedicated to the prevention of gender-based violence and violence against women: Paz y Desarrollo (PyD), Partners for Prevention (P4P), UNDP, UNFPA, UN Women and the UNV regional programme for Asia and the Pacific, the Spanish Agency for International Development Cooperation (AECID), and the United Nations Vietnam.
The Love Journey social media campaign consists of two online photography and advocacy competitions that will culminate in an offline event (a music concert in Danang City on December 16).
Phase I of the photography competition will begin on November 25, and contestants will be asked to form teams and submit photos essays on actions that are signs of a healthy relationship. Voting for the ideas in Phase 1 begins on December 7th with the first awardees to be announced on December 11th.
Phase 2 will begin on December 13th. Phase 2 will be open to the top 20 winners of Phase 1, and contestants will be asked to submit in-depth photos essays on what actions, small or large, are required to realize a healthy relationship. Voting for the ideas in Phase 2 begins on December 20th, with the awardees of two IPads announced on December 31st.
The ‘16 days of activism’ competition will begin on December 12th, and is aimed at high school and university students. Contestants will be asked to develop and implement ideas for promoting violence-free schools and community. Voting will begin on December 25th, with the awardee of one Ipad announced on December 31st.
At the end of the competition, two winners will be selected by a panel of judges consisting of rocker Pham Anh Khoa, representatives of PYD and P4P, to travel to Bangkok, Thailand to present their ideas at the regional United Nations office.
To learn more, visit www.htyt.vn
For further information, please contact:
Ms Nguyen Thi Hong Thanh
One UN Communications
Tel: +84 4 3822 4383 (ext. 117)