Members of Soroptimist International of Barbados and Soroptimist International of Jamestown held a candlelight vigil as a tribute and in memory of the victims and survivors of domestic and gender-based violence.
Candlelight vigil a sobering reminder
A candlelight vigil was held on Sunday night to observe and pay tribute to victims and survivors of domestic and gender-based violence.
The joint initiative was hosted by Soroptimist International of Barbados and Soroptimist International of Jamestown at the Jesus the Good Shepherd Church in Fitts Village St. James.
The harsh and sobering reality of the severity of this problem came when President of the Soroptimist of Barbados International Lisa Toppin- Corbin read the names of women who died as a result of gender-based violence since 2003. A moment of silence was observed in their memory.
Cheryl Niles President Soroptimist International of Jamestown said the evening’s activities were all about persons who would have endured domestic violence at any level. “Although we focus mainly on women, there are children, men and the elderly who endure violence at some level. It’s all about them and holding a candle for them.”
This point was driven home by psychiatrist Dr. Ermine Belle who delivered a presentation on the causes and warning signs of domestic and other types of violence and how persons can avoid, escape or prevent any volatile situation from escalating. Failure to do so, she lamented, often ends in death.
According to Niles, “Dr. Belle made us aware of what to look for in our families, workplaces. That it is not for one stereotype, but it’s everybody’s problem.”
Toppin- Corbin also reiterated the point made that all Barbadians must play their part by reaching out to our neighbours and by being our brother’s keeper to end gender-based violence.
Niles encouraged persons to light a candle for those victims and survivors of domestic violence until December 10, which officially marks the end of 16 days of activism being celebrated worldwide. (JH)