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The White Ribbon Activity around the world

March 6, 2001
Dear International White Ribbon Campaign Supporter:
As the International Outreach Coordinator for the White Ribbon Campaign – Canada (WRC), I am pleased to provide you with a brief update on WRC activities around the world and recent changes to the mandate of the WRC in Canada.

I am also writing to ask for your assistance in helping the WRC to improve the effectiveness of its international outreach efforts. To this end, I would be grateful if you could set aside a few minutes to complete and return the brief questionnaire found at the end of this message.


  • A new chapter of the WRC was established in Austria in November, 2000. The Austrian WRC has already attracted considerable media attention, organized workshops for men and boys, and is moving ahead with plans to develop new educational materials! To learn more about the Austrian WRC, visit their website at: www.whiteribbon.at
  • On Nov. 25, 2000 between 2000-3000 men participated in a White Ribbon March in Cape Town, South Africa to show solidarity and support for women and children who are victims of violence.
  • White Ribbon groups and/or organizations from 9 European countries worked together throughout 1999-2000 on a "EuroWRC" initiative supported by the European Commission’s Daphne Programme. For more information about this exciting initiative, visit the EuroWRC website: www.eurowrc.org  or contact the project coordinator, Mr. Roland Mayerl, by email at: cityandshelter@skiet.be
  • Between June 2000 – February 2001, the White Ribbon office in Canada provided materials and/or guidance to individuals wishing to organize White Ribbon activities in over 20 countries, including Australia, South Africa, Ghana, Bangladesh, Argentina, Georgia, India, Indonesia, Japan, Taiwan, Kenya, Uganda, Morocco, and New Zealand.


Refocusing the Mandate of the WRC: As part of a comprehensive organizational review, the Board of Directors of the White Ribbon Campaign – Canada (WRC) has clarified and re-focused the mandate of the campaign’s national office in Toronto, Canada. Over the next 2-3 years, the national office of the WRC will seek to mobilize the voice, commitment and resources of men in efforts to end violence against women primarily by developing comprehensive public-awareness/media campaigns and a focused (and energetic) advocacy presence. While the head office of the WRC will continue to support local White Ribbon activities across Canada and to assist the development of educational and training materials for students and teachers, these programs will no longer be the centerpiece of WRC activity.

In adopting this new strategy, the national office of the WRC hopes to reach a larger number of men with a more focused and inspiring message about the importance of ending men’s violence against women. This strategy will also permit WRC to develop additional expertise in the fields of public education and advocacy on the issue of men's violence against women.

To carry out this new strategy, the national office of WRC intends to place greater emphasis on the use of web-technology and the internet. With the generous support and assistance of Thin Data Inc., a Toronto-based web design company, the WRC has developed a new website with enhanced functionality. The new site is already up and running! You can visit the new website at www.whiteribbon.com . Over the next 12-24 months new features will be added to the website which will allow White Ribbon's growing international network of members and supporters to share ideas and information in a timely and cost-effective manner. By completing the questionnaire at the end of this message, you can help to ensure that the website contains the features, information and materials that YOU need to organize your own White Ribbon activity and to connect with people around the world who are working to end violence against women. !

Implications of the New Mandate on WRC’s International Outreach Efforts: In light of WRC’s limited financial resources and the programmatic requirements of the new mandate, two significant changes will be made to our international outreach program:

  1. First, as of April 15, 2001, the WRC will no longer have a staff member devoted exclusively to international outreach activities. As a result, the head office of the WRC in Toronto will not be able to answer individual requests for information or support in as timely or as detailed a fashion as has traditionally been the case.
  2. Although the national office of the WRC will devote fewer staff resources to international outreach activities, a greater number of non-staff resources will be made available to our international supporters and partners in the coming months. Many of these resources will be available – for FREE! – on our newly enhanced website. In particular, it is WRC’s intention to make some or all of the following services and materials available to its international supporters and partners in the next 12-24 months:
  • A searchable list of White Ribbon supporters/contacts in every country. We hope to create a "map" of the world on the website which is linked to our database. This feature will allow visitors to the website to retrieve the name (real or an alias) of individuals or organizations in their home country (or region or city) who are interested in working with, or being contacted by, other White Ribbon supporters.
  • A complete, up-to-date list of White Ribbon materials and documents available in a growing number of languages. WRC hopes to create a virtual "library" on the website that will allow individuals to access a wide-range of White Ribbon materials (available in an increasing number of languages) over the internet.
  • An expanded "Member’s Discussion Forum" which permits individuals to share ideas and information on a variety of topics related to the issue of violence against women, organizing local White Ribbon initiatives, and so on. Instead of receiving the perspective of just one or two staff members working in the WRC office in Canada, this feature of the website will allow all of our supporters to directly share information and advice to each other.
  • An "International Links" section on the website. This feature will become an invaluable resource for accessing international perspectives, information and resources on the issue of violence against women and men’s efforts to arrest the violence.
  • Although WRC is not in a position to provide direct financial resources to individuals or organizations working on the issue of violence against women outside of Canada, we may be able to compile a list of "Potential Sources of Funding for Overseas White Ribbon initiatives" . Available on the website, this list would offer information and web-links to government programs and charitable or corporate foundations which may be willing to support WRC and other anti-violence initiatives outside North America.


The WRC is committed to mobilizing the voice, commitment and resources of men in efforts to end men’s violence against women. Since its founding in Canada in 1991, the WRC has spread to over 30 countries and is now the largest effort of men in the world working to end men’s violence against women.

By taking 5-10 minutes to complete this survey, you can provide the staff of the WRC Canada with insight into the activities and needs of White Ribbon’s ever-expanding international network of supporters, members and volunteers.

Please return the questionnaire within the next 3 weeks or by the end of March at the latest! Unfortunately, information and ideas from questionnaires received after April 6th will not be available for inclusion in the WRC International Outreach Report that is to be distributed at the WRC Annual General Meeting on April 21, 2001.

By replying directly to this email message, you can obtain a version of the questionnaire on which you can record your responses.

Questionnaires returned by post should be mailed to the following address:

Tobias Novogrodsky
White Ribbon Campaign
365 Bloor Street East, Suite 203
Toronto, Ontario
Canada M4W-3L4


Please provide us with your current contact information. Please list the address (work or home) where you would prefer to receive future communications from the WRC:

Full Name:



Street Address:



Postal Code:

Telephone: (with country and regional codes):


Email Address:



  1. How did you FIRST learn about the White Ribbon Campaign?
    (Check one answer with an "X")

a) Learned about the WRC from a colleague or friend: _____

b) Learned about the WRC through the media (television, newspaper, etc.): ____

  1. Learned about the WRC from Michael Kaufman (WRC co-founder and co-chair)

    at an international conference or meeting: _____

  2. Learned about the WRC on the internet (e.g. visited a WRC website or read about

WRC in an on-line publication): _____

  1. Learned about the WRC after seeing someone wearing a white ribbon: _____
  2. Learned about the WRC after seeing or participating in a white ribbon "event" (demonstration, educational workshop, public meeting, etc) ______
  1. g) Learned about the WRC through some other means: _____ (please specify in
  2. the space below):


  1. Have you visited the White Ribbon website in the past 12 months?

    YES:________ NO: _________ (check one answer with an "X")


  2. Have you helped to organize or participated in any White Ribbon activities during the past 12 months (e.g. discussion group, educational work, demonstration, ribbon distribution, etc.)?

    YES:________ NO: _________ (check one answer with an "X")


  3. If you answered "YES" to Question #3, please provide a description of the activity in the space below. Feel free to indicate how many people attended the event, the type of media response (if any), how you felt about the experience, and your overall impression of the effectiveness of the activity. Please be honest! We can’t learn from each other without learning about what works and what doesn’t! If you are willing to provide us with a detailed description of your participation in a White Ribbon event, our staff may contact you to request your permission to feature your "story" in the next edition of the WRC newsletter, a publication read by over 20,000 individuals around the world!

    (Feel free to use more space! If you intend to return this questionnaire by email, simply keep on typing. If you intend to reply by post, please continue your description on the back of this page.)


  4. Do you intend to participate in or organize a White Ribbon activity/ event in the coming year? (check one)

    YES:________ NO: _________


  5. Would you be more likely to organize a White Ribbon activity/event if you knew of someone else in your city/region with whom you could share the work (and fun!) ?

    YES:________ NO: _________ (check one)


  6. The WRC intends to add a variety of new features to its website over the next 12-24 months (see list above). Accordingly, the WRC is trying to identify those features which are MOST highly valued by its international members and supporters. To help us with this task, please indicate which features you consider to be a priority, and which you consider to be of lesser importance. Place a "1" beside your top priority, a "2" beside the next most important feature, and so on.
  1. World map linked to WRC database for easy identification of WRC

supporters/members by city, region or country: _____

b) Translated versions of WRC documents/materials: _____

  1. Expanded Member’s Discussion Forum. This feature might include a "discussion board" which permits individuals to post questions on the website to which WRC staff or other visitors to the website could reply and/or a "list-serve" feature which allows individuals to receive (or share) information (articles, personal insights, academic papers, and so on) on a range of topics related to the issue of violence against women: _____

d) International website links: _____

e) Potential Sources of Funding for Overseas WRC projects: _____

  1. Are there other features or materials not listed in Question #7 (above) or currently available on the website that you’d like to see? If so, please write your suggestion here:



  2. Would you be willing to translate any of WRC’s documents or educational materials into your native language? (check one answer with an "X"):

YES: _____ , I could translate materials into ___________ (specify a language)

NO: _____

10. WRC sees itself as a catalyst for bringing men and women together to address the

issue of violence against women. To perform this task more effectively, we are hoping to create a mechanism whereby members and supporters can communicate directly with each other without the assistance or "mediation" of a WRC staff person. We are exploring various options that would increase the ability of members to communicate with each other while safe-guarding their privacy. Two such options are to:

  1. Ask all members/supporters to indicate which aspects of their personal information they would be willing to make accessible on the website. Once implemented, this system would permit a visitor to the website to view only those elements of a WRC member/supporter’s contact information which that individual had explicitly "authorized" WRC to make available for public viewing.
  2. Create a feature on the website which allows an individual to send an email message to WRC supporters/members in a particular city or country, but which does not permit that individual to see the individual names or email addresses of the individuals who will receive the message.

Which of these options would you prefer? Do you have any alternative suggestions, concerns or comments?

11. Do you have any other comments, advice, concerns or suggestions to share with the staff of the WRC in Canada?

Tobias Novogrodsky
White Ribbon Campaign
365 Bloor Street East, Suite 203
Toronto, Ontario
Canada M4W-3L4