Bicol landmark turns orange for campaign to end violence vs women
ALBAY, Philippines – A historic landmark in Albay has turned orange in support of the worldwide campaign to end violence against women.
On Friday night, November 25, the Cagsawa Ruins in Daraga town took on the color in support of the "Orange Your Icon" campaign, said Bicol tourism regional director Maria Nini Ong-Ravanilla.
Ravanilla said this is Bicol region's participation in the global effort to break the culture of silence and violence against women and children in tourism areas.
“What we want is to break the culture of silence because prostitution occurs in tourism areas. What we want is a violence-free community in all tourism sites,” Ravanilla said.
The Philippine Commission on Women (PCW) launched the 18-day "Orange Your Icon" campaign on November 25 to increase public awareness on the need to end violence against women and children.
The PCW said orange was chosen as the symbolic color for the effort as is a "bright and optimistic" color representing "hope."
Part of the effort is to promote VAW-free tourism sites in the Philippines, especially as 60% to 70% of workers in the tourism industry are women, PCW said.
Walk the talk
To gain public awareness on the campaign in Bicol, the region's Department of Tourism office transformed Cagsawa Ruins into an orange landmark using orange lights, flags, streamers, and banners around the area.
Cagsawa is a major tourist attraction in the Bicol region.
“For us to gain and attract public awareness, Cagsawa is our chosen landmark to walk the talk," Ravanilla said.
"This is done in 18 regions where major landmarks or icons nationwide are colored orange, a bright and optimistic color that represents hope, providing opportunities for advocates pursuing this campaign to end up violence against women and children,” she added.
About 1,500 people joined the DOT-Bicol event.
The PCW and DOT launched the “Orange Your Icon for 18 Days” as one of the major activities in solidarity with the United Nations' "UNITE to End VAW Campaign."
Globally, the 16 days of activism against gender violence is being observed – November 25, which is the International Day to Eliminate Violence Against Women, to December 10 which is Human Rights Day. – Rappler.com