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Nov 25, 2009

Shoes that tell the plight of abused women

25941There were one thousand three hundred fifty-one cases of domestic violence reported in 2008. That is what the statistics show, but the National Women’s Commission, the Women’s Department and the Y.W.C.A. have collaborated on an exhibit to get the public to look beyond the numbers. According to Public Relations Officer for the Y.W.C.A., Ann-Marie Williams, “In Her Shoes” is a display of twenty-seven pairs of footwear, each representing the plight of fifty women. The exhibit is set to open tonight since today is the International Day to End Violence Against Women. Williams explains the concept behind this unique exhibit, which is also a part of the Sixteen Days of Activism activities.

Ann-Marie Williams, Public Relations Director, YWCA
“This is a travelling exhibition and a lot of times we see numbers and we don’t really quite put a face to it. But to look at it in this way and to hear of the women’s stories because each shoe carries a story. And while there are some domestic violence survivors with their shoe on display telling their stories that are so heart wrenching, there are other prominent women in society who have not been abused but have worked tirelessly to try to put an end to domestic violence; there stories too are on display.”

Delahnie Bain
“It’s a very interesting choice to use the shoes to represent them. How did that idea come about?”

Ann-Marie Williams
“This is an idea not is not one that belongs to Belize. It’s an idea that’s been practiced all over the world. The YWCA of Trinidad did it and the YWCA of Scotland. So YWCA Belize thought that it would be real nice to follow in their footsteps literally and do this exhibition because Belize is part of a wider community and today being the International Day to End Violence against Women and our struggles are the same, we share in the same conventions and what better way to do it? And there couldn’t be a more timely fashion. The exhibition is open to the general public starting tomorrow until the tenth of December which is part of the sixteen days of activism and the public has to be involved because we have women who beat up on men and we have men who beat up on women. They’re our brothers, our fathers, our uncles. They’re our aunts and our sisters and we need people to see what’s going on.”

The exhibit is being held at the Bliss Center for the Performing Arts and can be viewed free of cost.


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