THE white ribbon - a symbol of hope for a better world where women and girls can live free from violence - were distributed to employees of the United Nations Women Pacific headquarters in honour of the International Day for the Elimination of Violence against Women.
Spokeswoman Anne Rehagen said the white ribbons, supplied to all staff of the United Nations agencies in Suva, were distributed on Thursday to be worn for the 16 days of activism against gender violence.
The ribbon reflects the person's commitment to ending violence, the United Nations Women's agency said in a statement released to mark the International Day for the Elimination of Violence Against Women.
The first White Ribbon campaign, launched in 1991 by a group of men in Canada after the brutal mass shooting of 14 female students at the University of Montreal, was recognised by the the world body on November 25, 1996.
"Wearing the ribbon is about challenging the acceptability of violence - by getting men involved, helping women to break the silence, and encouraging everyone to come together to build a better world for all," the United Nations Women's agency said.
Organisations participating in the 16 Days of Activism include FemLINKPACIFIC, the Pacific Centre for Peacebuilding, Commonwealth Local Government Forum, Disabled Persons Organisations, the Fiji Red Cross Society, Fiji Women's Crisis Centre and the Fiji Network for People Living with HIV.
The International Day for the Elimination of Violence against Women and the ensuing 16 Days of Activism against Gender Violence are commemorated globally each year to raise awareness and trigger action on this pervasive human rights violation, the United Nations Women's agency said.