In every country, gender-based violence is a tragic reality. This violence is frequently hidden, and victims are often silent, fearing stigma and further violence.
We all have a responsibility to speak out against violence, to ensure that women and men, boys and girls, are safe from rape and violence in homes, schools, work, streets – in all places in our societies.
The campaign is simple but profound. Wear black on Thursdays. Wear a pin to declare you are part of the global movement resisting attitudes and practices that permit rape and violence. Show your respect for women who are resilient in the face of injustice and violence. Encourage others to join you.
Often black has been used with negative racial connotations. In this campaign Black is used as a color of resistance and resilience.
What is the Thursdays in Black Campaign?
Thursdays in Black grew out of the World Council of Churches (WCC) Decade of Churches in Solidarity with Women (1988-1998), in which the stories of rape as a weapon of war, gender injustice, abuse, violence, and many tragedies that grow outward from such violence became all the more visible. But what also became visible was women’s resilience, agency and personal efforts to resist such violations.
The campaign was inspired by:
- The Mothers of the Disappeared in Buenos Aires, Argentina who on Thursdays protested at the Plaza de Mayo, against the disappearance of their children during the violent dictatorship.
- The Women in Black in Israel and Palestine, who up to now protest against war and violence.
- Women in Rwanda and Bosnia who were protesting against the use of rape as a weapon of war during the genocide.
- Black Sash movement in South Africa protesting against apartheid and its use of violence against black people.
Join this movement of people and organizations that can make a difference to individuals, communities, and national and international policy forums.
Feel free to download and print your own campaign materials:
Thursdays in Black badges with WCC logo, print-ready pdf file with crop-marks
Thursdays in Black badges (generic), print-ready pdf file with crop-marks.
Thursdays in Black “Valentine’s Day” focuses on “Love heals, not hurts”
A special WCC campaign is tackling abuse and violence in “loving” relationships. Valentine’s Day, 14 February, falls on a Thursday this year, and is being connected to the Thursdays in Black campaign against rape and violence.