“Empower women, empower society” is the closing motto of the short video that spearheads the third phase of Dianova’s Human Empowerment campaign.
Started on the International Day against Drug Abuse and Illicit Trafficking (26 June 2019), the campaign revives on the occasion of the International Day for the Elimination of Violence against Women on the 26 November. Until Human Rights Day, on 10 December, the Dianova Network will emphasize the relationship between violence against women and substance use.
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The campaign’s flagship video features a teenage girl who, because of negative experiences, gets lost in a spiral of addiction and violence. The video aims to highlight the specific problems faced by girls and women with substance use disorders, as well as the importance of their empowerment as a tool to put violence and stigma to and end.
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The number of women with substance use issues enrolling in treatment programmes remains very low despite the soaring prevalence of those affected. In addition, women who succeed in entering treatment programmes typically have a shorter stay than men and, after treatment completion, are more frequently exposed to relapse.
In addition to experiencing physical and mental health problems, these women often experience physical and sexual violence or have a history of violence and abuse. They also face negative or inadequate social support systems, inadequate income, unemployment, unstable housing, and involvement with the criminal justice system. On top of this, women entering treatment often find themselves in a male-centred environment, designed for and populated by men that does not address their specific needs.
Why the Human Empowerment Campaign?
Dianova believes that there is an urgent need to create more awareness among the general public, the media, decision makers and health professionals of the specific problems women face when confronted with substance use disorders, including stigma, gender-related differences, violence, and obstacles to treatment and social reintegration. This is the reason why the campaign will endeavour to emphasize how addiction and gender are closely interconnected, through the lens of a single concept, Human Empowerment.
Our objective is to raise awareness of the need for change in people with substance use or other addiction disorders, to promote the use of effective treatment programmes, and to urge governments, the private sector, foundations and other stakeholders to support some of the Dianova network’s specific programmes and projects with financial aid and other contributions.
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