As part of the United Nations (UN) 16-day awareness campaign against gender-based violence, the Lebanese Democratic Women’s Gathering (RDFL) organized a handicraft exhibition.
“We usually organize more than one activity during the 16-day activism, but this year, we organized a handicraft exhibition due to the bad economic conditions. Women and girls attending our courses on making handicrafts displayed their works at the exhibition,” stated the RDFL coordinator Rafqa Bou Younes.
The exhibition aimed to empower women who have fallen victim to violence through the Economic Empowerment Program, so they can gain economic independence that will allow them to protect themselves from all forms of violence.
Bou Younes also shared stories of the RDFL’s one-month handicraft course and how two women managed to start their own businesses through the knowledge they obtained.
Founded in 1976 as a feminist and secular NGO, the RDFL is one of the oldest volunteer-based organizations in Lebanon. It advocates for the rights of women and girls, and for the eradication of gender-based violence and discrimination.
The NGO is headquartered in Adliya, Beirut, and has several centers across Lebanon, including Zouk Mikael, Baalbeck, and Tripoli, where it receives reports of any case of violence and offers psycho-social and legal support.
Its hotline 71 500 808 operates 24/7 and is confidential and free.
Gender-based violence is an ongoing crime that continues to plague Lebanon. According to a study conducted by ABAAD, 6 out of 10 women in the country do not report sexual abuse. Additionally, last weekend women took to the streets to demand harsher punishments for sexual abuse.