Thursday, October 14, 2010

Caribbean Artistes UNiTE to End Violence Against Women

St Michael, Barbados:
Popular dancehall entertainer Bounty Killer, who has recently been before the courts after multiple altercations with female companions, is among a number of Caribbean artistes who have pledged their support for the eradication of violence against women in the region.

"He's definitely going to be getting involved in it. He acknowledges that he has been in situations like that before, so he wants to try and become a positive example by contributing to a cause like this and being able to talk to others who find themselves in these situations. So he will be putting a lot of energy into this project," said Bounty's manager, Julian Jones-Griffith.

However, he said they are yet to formulate exactly what form his contribution will take.
Minister of Culture, Youth and Sports, Olivia 'Babsy' Grange, made the announcement during the Caribbean launch of the UNiTE campaign to end violence against women, held at the Hilton Barbados, this week.
Grange said Bounty Killer, whose real name is Rodney Pryce, had sent a message to her while she was at the conference, stating that he wanted to turn a new page in his life and was willing to be part of any programme that addresses the issue of violence against women.

The United Nations Secretary-General's campaign has been using Caribbean artistes to convey messages for a change from the form of abuse which continues to increase in the region.  
Grange, who was chairing a panel on Caribbean artistes at the conference, said using artistes to convey the message for a transformed society was a positive move which would reap success.
"There is no doubt that if you want to increase public awareness and social mobilisation you have to use music," she said.

Dominican artiste Nelly Stharre expressed her delight for the opportunity to contribute to the change in society. She said artistes can make a difference through music by conveying the right messages in music. "A lot of time artistes don't understand the opportunity and responsibility we have to make a difference in society, more effective than our parents and teachers, even politicians," she said.

Stharre noted that it would take hard work and determination to tackle the problem which has been plaguing society for so long.
Adisa Jelani Andwele, an artiste, who is the UNDP spokesperson for peace and poverty eradication, and reggae artiste Masud Sadiki from St Kitts, are also working with the group.

The United Nations Development Fund for Women (UNIFEM) said artistes, due to their power of voice and personality, can make a tremendous contribution to the campaign by educating and sensitising everyone, who needs to join in the fight to end gender-based violence.
In the meantime, UNIFEM has pledged to work along with the 'Sisters for Sisters' and the 'Brothers for Sisters' programme in Jamaica, as well as several artistes, to extend their cultural Caribbean artistes UNiTE to the island.

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