Media Advisory: International Day for the Elimination of Violence against Women commemoration at UN Headquarters


The official commemoration of the United Nations International Day for the Elimination of Violence against Women (November 25) will take place on Wednesday, 22 November 2017, at the ECOSOC Chamber, United Nations Headquarters, New York, from 10 a.m. to 12 p.m.  

The event will precede the 16 Days of Activism Against Gender-Based Violence Campaign (25 November – 10 December) commemorated by the UN under the umbrella of the Secretary-General’s campaign UNiTE to End Violence against Women. This year’s theme is “Leave No One Behind: End Violence against Women and Girls”, in line with the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development. It emphasizes the importance of reaching the most marginalized, including adolescents and the elderly, indigenous women and women affected by conflict and natural disaster, first.

One in three women and girls experience violence in their lifetime. This year’s commemoration coincides with the unprecedented mobilization of millions behind #MeToo and other movements in an escalating global protest against sexual harassment and assault.

During the 16 Days, governments, civil society and individuals will be mobilized and iconic buildings and monuments lit up in orange, the official colour of the UNiTE campaign, symbolizing hope and a violence-free world. The call is for everyone to play their part to end violence against women and girls— through marches and rallies, concerts and public festivals—and taking the outcry to action. In 2016, people in a record 105 countries participated. 

This year also marks the first year of the UNiTE Campaign under the new leadership of the United Nations Secretary-General António Guterres, who has declared his strong commitment towards a world free of violence for all women and girls. Mr. Guterres will deliver the opening remarks at the November 22 event.

Other participants include:

  • Carey Mulligan, UK Global Dementia Friends and Alzheimer’s Society Ambassador and Oscar-nominated actor
  • Phumzile Mlambo-Ngcuka, Under-Secretary-General and UN Women Executive Director
  • Morgen Chinoona, UN Trust Fund programme participant
  • Dragana Ciric Milovanovic, UN Trust Fund programme participant

The event will feature segments of the Emmy-award winning series, “The Handmaid’s Tale”, followed by a panel discussion with members of the cast and crew, including the producer, Bruce Miller and costume designer Ane Crabtree, as well as musical performances. The commemoration event will be moderated by Sherwin Bryce-Pease, UN Bureau Chief of South Africa Broadcasting Corporation, and President of the UN Correspondent’s Association 2017.

The event is open to the media, UN press accreditation is required to attend. More information at:

For interview requests, please contact [ Click to reveal ].

Live Webcast of the event will be available on UN Web TV and UN Women’s website. Follow the online conversation using #orangetheworld #16days, and follow @SayNO_UNiTE  @UN_Women

Check out the 16 Days editorial content at