The hosting of the Family Awards headlined Family Month celebrations 2019, with forty-six (46) persons being honoured for their role within communities.
An initiative of the Department of Community Development and Social Services, the Awards honoured outstanding community mothers and fathers who contribute regularly to family building and outreach to youth – and was therefore considered a fitting activity for Family Month celebrations, which run from May to June each year.
The National Ageing Policy has moved closer to refinement, with the hosting of stakeholder consultations on May 28th and 29th, 2019, with support from PAHO (Pan American Health Organization). The first consultation was held at the Anglican Church Hall in Nevis on May 28th, and the second the following day at the East Basseterre Community Centre, St. Kitts. Both consultations saw attendance from a wide cross section of persons, including representatives from several government departments, including Planning and Social Services, legal, medical, and religious bodies, and non-governmental organizations, such as the Alzheimer’s Association and the Flamboyant Nursing Home.
The road towards addressing domestic violence in the Federation continued with consultations on the Domestic and Sexual Violence Protocol, on June 13th, 2019. The PAHO-supported meeting, which was held at the Solid Waste Management Conference Room, was aimed at senior level officers of stakeholder groups, such as the Police Force, the Magistrates Court, Health services, and the Departments of Social Services and Gender Affairs. Other stakeholder groups, such as the St. Kitts-Nevis Association of Persons with Disabilities, were also present.
International Women’s Day is celebrated on March 8th and is an occasion where women from all backgrounds are recognized for their achievements. The Department of Gender Affairs commemorates International Women’s Day through the coordination of various activities during the month of March that include raising awareness of the contribution of local women.
The Department of Gender Affairs observed sixteen days of activism against gender-based violence, from November 25-December 10, 2019. The annual campaign is a worldwide observance which aims to raise awareness of gender-based harm (which refers to violence against someone because of their gender) and to advocate for its elimination.
The Department of Gender Affairs joins similar institutions worldwide in activism designed to end violence against women, men and children. The Sixteen Day Campaign begins on November 25th, and ends with International Human Rights Day on December 10th. The campaign calls for the elimination of all forms of violence against women, men and children. Activities to sensitize the general public are conducted to raise awareness of gender-based violence as a human rights issue. The Department works towards promoting innovation and strategic awareness to reduce crime, in addition to advocating on behalf of victims of gender-based violence.