UN Women NC Australia launches visual petition and campaign #FaceItTogether to help combat violence against women and girls in the Pacific

BMF1873-1_TALLENT-THREE_APN_476x728.jpgUN Women National Committee (NC) Australia has launched a visual petition to coincide with International Women's Day on March 8.

The campaign via The Pulse, Frank PR, Andreas Smetana, Maxus and BMF, shines a light on violence against women and girls in the region, where as many as two in three women will experience violence and abuse at the hands of those closest to them. In some places, as many as 100% of women report experiencing violence.

The campaign sees the creation of a single portrait, composed of the faces of all the men, women and children who pledge their support and image. The petition, and the affiliated fundraising campaign, is designed to help women affected by violence in the Pacific.

UN Women goodwill ambassador Nicole Kidman has been the first celebrity to donate her face to this international petition. UN Women National Committee Australia champion Nicole da Silva, Wallabies captain Stephen Moore and Sydney Swans forward Kurt Tippett have also pledged their faces.

BMF1873-2_TALLENT-FOUR_APN_512x768.jpgAustralia's renowned photographer Andreas Smetana contributed to the campaign by capturing more than 75 faces of men and women, from different nationalities, ages and backgrounds. His photographs are the first faces to lead the portrait gallery.

Says Smetana: "I believe in the power of non-fiction visual storytelling, and we always make a real effort to work with organisations who do good. 'Violence Against Women' does not only affect women but society as a whole. We are excited to be part of this project. I for one will give some money."

From today, a virtual platform at faceittogether.unwomen.org.au will allow users to take their photograph and submit it to the visual petition or upload an existing image of their choice.  

The site developed by TheBMF1873-3_TALLENT-FIVE_APN_512x768.jpg Pulse (creative technology partner) will also give pledgers the chance to share their image within the composition on social media, using the hashtag #FaceItTogether.  Campaigners are urging supporters to do so and even request that individuals use the image as their social profile picture for the duration of the campaign.

Says Brett Heil, managing director, The Pulse: "We are honoured to contribute to this important campaign and urge everyone to participate in the most visible way possible, by adding your face to the cause."

As each day passes, pledgers will be able to revisit the site, to see the composition evolve as more and more individuals commit their faces.

Whilst campaigners are calling on Australians to join celebrities and prominent national figuresBMF1873-4_TALLENT-SIX_APN_476x728.jpg in uploading their face, they are keen to stress that this alone will not bring about change.

Says Julie McKay, executive director of UN Women NC Australia: "Your face is your pledge, but your donation is the easiest way for you to show your support and invest in the elimination of violence against women.

"Make no mistake; this is a life and death issue. Every ten minutes, somewhere in the world, a girl loses her life to violence. If every person who pledges their image were to donate just $20, then we have a real chance of saving lives."

Money raised will build on the strides already made in recent years: from increased access to shelters for women at imminent risk, to the establishment of a 24-hour crisis hotline.

The Pulse, Frank PR, Andreas Smetana, Maxus and BMF.
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