By Bill W. Cooper
The Episcopal Church of Liberia Relief and Development (ECLRD) is calling on every Liberian and residents to join the fight to end violence against women and other vulnerable persons within Liberia.
Speaking during their commemoration of the 16 Days of Activism Against Gender-Based Violence held at the weekend, the ECLRD Vicar General of the Trinity Cathedral Church in Monrovia, Venerable Sie-Sunday Freeman, stressed “we, religious and faith leaders must first of all soberly reflect on our resolve to work with the government and other development partners to bring an end to this nightmare that is negatively affecting our well-being and existence as a people.”
This year’s global campaign theme is ‘Orange the World; End Violence Against Women Now’ while the national theme is ‘Enough is Enough! Let’s Act Now to End Violence Against Women, Girls, Children and other Marginalized Groups,” and according to him, Liberians irrespective of their political or religious affiliation should now begin to treat women with the respect they deserve.
He wondered, “we hear about the increase in violence perpetrated against women and children, bedsides the bad feelings and empathy we express, what are we doing to end this nightmare and menace that is eating the very fabric of our society?”
The ECLRD Vicar General. among other things. explained that Liberia as other countries has been battling the coronavirus pandemic and women and children particularly experienced different forms of violence, ranging from battering, denial of food and even sexual abuse which he said was perpetrated by family members, neighbors and community dwellers.
“This human rights violation has to stop and stop now. We must take action, and ensure the alleged perpetrators do not escape and must be tried for their crime. So, as we commemorate the 16 days of Activism, we have joined to empathize with every woman and girl whose lives are scarier than the worst nightmare and do not pay attention to those in society who are still naïve to understand the suffering you are experiencing and are defending your abusers and are blaming you.
“Be assured that you were made to be grate and do grate things. You have so much to live for and therefore must not let trade your potential. Do not continue to live in an abusive relationship; you must believe in yourself; do not live low, when you can walk high,” Mr. Freemen acknowledge.
Meanwhile, the ECLRD Vicar General further disclosed that throughout the 16 days of Activism, the National and County Faith Leaders Coalitions along with the County-level Faith Based Youth Coalitions and students will participate in several activities including radio talkshows, dramas, sporting events, as well as programs to create awareness on the need to prevent and end violence against women and children.
The ECLRD Health and Development Board of Director, Marjon Kamara, called on every well-meaning Liberian to initiate different approach in ending GBV in Liberia.
She said, “We have from time said all of these sweet speeches and words yet we are still faced with this nightmare; so, I think it is time that we demonstrate innovation and change the dynamics if the situation is to be remedy.”
Episcopal Church Wants
Liberians Unite To End GBV
By Bill W. Cooper