Press Release-UN Women Pakistan’s new ‘#BeatMe’ campaign brings an unconventional twist to advocacy on women’s rights. In a compelling paradox, the campaign showcases a woman inviting a man to beat her – but at things she is good at. The campaign, aims to inspire women to reaffirm that they are stronger than they are made to believe, and aims to shatter the perception that a woman is weak, taking her from someone who is ‘beatable’ to being ‘unbeatable’.
Violence against women and girls is an infringement of human rights taking place with alarming frequency and severity not only in Pakistan but around the world sparking public outrage, though justice for victims tends to be more elusive.
The campaign mobilizes women and men to demand an end to violence against women, a gross violation of women’s human rights that affects at least 1 in 3 women and girls globally. It is a pandemic that must be stopped.
Launched [earlier today/this week?] through social media with a video that features Pakistani women of strength from multiple walks of life, the campaign challenges their counterparts to beat them at their respective expertise, and at the amazing things women have achieved, globally. The ‘#BeatMe’ campaign juxtaposes every means of abuse against a strength of each woman. Verbal abuse is addressed by challenging men to beat women with their voice and words from the likes of Meesha Shafi (singer) and Sana Bucha (journalist). Physical abuse is challenged by women mountaineers and athletes such as Samina Baig (only Pakistani woman and third Pakistani to climb Mount Everest) and Naseem Hameed (fastest woman in the South Asia games) who invites men to beat her 100-meter race time. The message focuses on the strength of women no matter where they are from and debunks the erroneous notion of women being inferior to men.
The campaign coincides with 16 Days of Activism Against Gender Based Violence, a global initiative led by UN Women on behalf of the UN Secretary-General’s global campaign UNiTE to End Violence against Women, from 25 November (International Day to End Violence against Women) until 10 December (International Human Rights Day).
Jamshed Kazi, Country Representative for UN Women Pakistan says: “The #BeatMe campaign poignantly drives home a universal message that verbal and physical violence against women in Pakistan and beyond is unacceptable – this is not normal, and it cannot continue. If men treat women as badly as they choose to – beating, burning, abusing or killing her – with little or no consequence, it negates all efforts to build a safe world in which women and girls can flourish. In every country, we have very resilient, resourceful, talented and brave women and girls. This campaign celebrates their strengths and achievements as being ‘unbeatable’, and acknowledges women’s equality as a driving force for successful societies and nations”.
The campaign puts an emphasis on stories of women who have reached their goals despite the patriarchal mindset they face every day – their stories are featured online as well as in print. Additionally, people from many walks of life (social influencers, parliamentarians, personalities and celebrities) inside Pakistan and beyond have come forward at the opportunity to express how this issue is of personal importance to them and shared messages of support for the campaign.
UN Women Pakistan’s ‘#BeatMe’ campaign is part of a longer-term, multi-faceted effort to end violence against women and girls. From advocating and supporting efforts for legal transformation to providing comprehensive services to survivors, and boosting efforts to persecute offenders, UN Women seeks to end violence against women and influence positive shift in social attitudes, especially among men and boys. This campaign is created together with BBDO Pakistan and aims to open a larger conversation on violence against women, women’s rights and gender equality in the country and across the world.
Everyone has a role in the efforts to end violence against women. We invite you to join us as an important influencer of public awareness and action.