Green Scarf Stories, entry two, April 29, 2014
Peace comes in many different forms. Sometimes it can be as simple as providing the space for conversation. One particular discussion I’d like to share occurred with a group of friends here in Stockholm as we were catching up over dinner after a long winter. All of us had attended Mount Holyoke College, the oldest women’s college in the United States. Our conversation focused on fellow alum Rita Banerji’s work to promote the rights of women and girls in India through the 50 Million Missing Campaign (www.50millionmissing.info). This is a zero fund campaign which focuses on the issue of femicide (female genocide). For many years, Rita has been trying to give voice to the issue of femicide, and recently went to the United Nations’ first international conference on femicide to expand the conversation about why the UN needs to push for recognition of it as genocide under the 1948 Act.
We decided that being part of the conversation on human rights is a necessary first step. So we snapped a photo of our group wearing green scarves and sent it to Rita, as well as our college magazine to see if we could expand the conversation about femicide in India to include other classmates with their own networks and friends. Here we are.
FROM LEFT: (FRONT) Peppe Kuhavuori, Anneliese Lilienthal, and Alexandra D’Urso with baby Solenn (BACK) Sara Hendey, Nisha Nilsson, and Lena Landstedt-Hallin
Of course this conversation is far from over, but it was one step towards expanding it. Mobilizing support for the well-being of all people on a greater scale world-wide is a huge task, but every small step creates the momentum for social change.
A Green Scarf Party
The inspiration for our Green Scarf Party came from a You Tube clip about Afghan women wearing green scarves to promote peace in their country. Many people after viewing this video have taken a photo of themselves wearing a green scarf and added it to a media campaign to support Afghan women.
Another deeply inspiring story is the Facebook campaign to create peaceful ties between Israel and Iran. People have been taking photos of themselves with a green heart and the caption “We love you” and posting it on Facebook. This video shows an amazing story of how the media can be used to promote peace.