UNFPA Launches Partnership with BotswanaPost to Stamp out GBV

26 June 2015

UNFPA Botswana has partnered with BotswanaPost to launch a stamp titled “Say No To Gender Based Violence ACT NOW” in an effort to increase awareness about gender based violence against women and girls.

The stamp launched on 25 June is part of the UNFPA’s effort to support the United Nations Secretary General’s UNiTE to End Violence against Women campaign which was launched in 2012. Activities implemented on this day by UN country offices strive to highlight issues relevant to preventing and ending violence against women and girls, not only once a year, but every month.

Over two thirds of women in Botswana (67%) have experienced some form of gender based violence in their lifetime including partner violence. A smaller, but still high, proportion of men (44%) admit to perpetrating violence against women. In contrast, only 1.2% of Batswana women reported cases of GBV to the police in the same period. Thus the prevalence of GBV reported in the survey is 24 times higher than that reported to the police.

UNFPA Botswana Country Representative Aisha Camara-Drammeh said; “I would like to applaud BotswanaPost for their consideration to an END to GBV. I have no doubt that this critical milestone that we are setting for ourselves to preventing and halting all forms of violence, especially against women and girls will bear fruits - sooner than later. I believe that BotswanaPost is therefore a natural partner to deliver messages against gender based violence across the country with its letter delivery.”

BotswanaPost delivers over one million letters a month with an annual mail forecast for the year at over 28 million excluding Bulk Mail. Every letter dispatched by Botswana Post will carry the GBV stamp on the envelope encouraging the public to Say NO to gender based violence ACT NOW”, a message that potentially reaches 1 million people worldwide monthly. This is expected to increase men, women, boys’ and girls’ knowledge of gender based violence. The campaign is to run for a year.

Botswana Post Head of Mail Services Setshedi Botlhole Mmopi said; “Through this initiative we are ensuring our contribution to preventing violence against women and creating a healthy civil society. We hope this stamp issue goes some way to helping people make informed choices and change attitudes and practices on gender equality.”

The event was also graced by Neo Thema, who is the Africa UNiTE Ambassador in Botswana along with members of the civil society. A survivor of gender based violence, Neo Thema told a sad story; one of violence and desperation which highlighted that the scars of GBV are permanet. She also pointed out that the scourge of gender based violence is more severe after the violence itself not when it is happening.

This stamp is part of an awareness campaign for women as well as men that the rights to life, the right not to be beaten or tortured, are fundamental human rights without distinction to gender, race, religion or nationality.