The #SurvivorsUnited delegation has returned home after a powerful week in Colombia to share the needs and demands of sexual violence survivors. Nobel Laureates Jody Williams and Shirin Ebadi and Survivors United for Action members Jineth Bedoya Lima and Hania Moheeb traveled to Cartagena and Bogota to hear first-hand the experiences of sexual violence survivors in the country— and witness Campaign members’ innovative strategies to advocate for justice.
Highlights of the delegation included:
- A visit to City of Women to hear displaced women urge for more protection and social services for women
- A national live-streamed forum on sexual violence to spotlight the need for justice for survivors
- Meetings with officials in Colombia—including President Santos and the Ministry of Defence—to press for survivor reparations to be front and centre in the current peace negotiations
Campaign members in Colombia made clear the challenges facing survivors of sexual violence. Men dominate the peace-table, leaving little room for women’s voices in peace negotiations; armed groups continue to use sexual violence against women; and, impunity for gender-based crimes is rampant.
In the face of these challenges women in Colombia are uniting to end the use of sexual violence as a weapon of war and demand justice. They are working together to take cases of sexual violence to the courts, provide essential health and psychosocial services to survivors, and raise their voices through creative media campaigns.
We extend our sincere thanks to Jineth Bedoya Lima and her incredible team at Casa Editorial El Tiempo for generously inviting and hosting us in Colombia, and to YOU— thank you for following us online to see #SurvivorsUnited for Action in Colombia!