Up until then, the girls had sought refuge from their abusive father and mother going so far as to run away from home. The youngest had confessed to her school guidance counsellor that she was afraid to return home, terrified that her father would kill her. Unfortunately, the bodies of the three girls and their father's infertile first wife were found in a river in Ontario, brutally killed by the very people they had warned their trusted ones about.
The trial termed the brutal murder an “honor killing” (an absurd recently deemed un-islamic idea by the Islamic Supreme Council of Canada) and the father Muhammed, wife Yahya and son Hammed were sentenced for first degree murder: life in prison with a possibility of parole in 25 years.
When Project Liberty had a display at Marianopolis advocating Stop Violence Against Women, lying on the table were photos and stories of a dozen girls, all killed for their right to live and be happy, mostly in various Middle Eastern countries. The crimes committed by their family members (usually a father, brother, husband or mother) ranged from getting acid thrown in their faces, being brutally stabbed and even stoned to death.
But the worst part is that many of these brutal “honor killings” are happening right here in Canada. The Shafia girls were killed in Kingston, and Aqsa Parvez, a 16 year old girl killed to save her family from “embarrassment” was strangled to death in Mississauga by her brother.
Aside from the horrific "honor killings" the number of women being harmed is even greater once you take into account how many are domestically abused or sexually assaulted in the African continent and other third world countries. This is where the issue of awareness comes in.
I am currently taking an Art and Activism class and for our final project we either have to write a paper or create a work of art. With the help of my sister, we came up with a plan to make a quilting project to raise awareness about violence against women worldwide.
Here's how you can help:
Let your friends know about this project. We want to get as many people involved as possible.
Decorate a patch for a quilt (6x8 inches on cloth) with anything you like. Bear in mind these questions while decorating:
-What does it mean to be a woman?
-How do you feel about gender equality?
-What sort of activities do you like to do?
The patch can be decorated any way you wish, as simple as coloring with markers to bedazzling it. You can put anything you want on it such as an activity that you like (a book perhaps, or a keyboard and musical notes) to what you think it means to be a woman (love, family, etc...) Think about everything you are allowed to do and dedicate that to a woman who was denied that right.
Please have the patch ready by the first week of April if you are participating in Blanket Violence Against Women's first quilt. The finished quilt will be on display at Marianopolis College during Arts Fest if you wish to see it.
Please, if you have any questions, feel free to send me an email!
Blanket Violence Against Women is a movement to raise awareness about the atrocities of abuse against women by creating the ultimate source of warmth and protection: a quilt. Every patch donated to this cause is dedicated to those women who cannot experience what we do. Please tell your friends and unite to end violence against women.