16 Ways in 16 Days

Each day from 25 November to December 10, we're giving you resources and actions you can take this 16 Days of Activism.

Get involved and join the movement to end gender-based violence.

# 1
Share and acknowledge the problem.

One in three women will experience gender-based violence in her life, yet more than 50% of Australian's do not think domestic violence happens in their community.

Sharing and acknowledging the problem is the first step to solving it.

You can find more information about domestic and family violence in Australia below.

Watch WAGEC's explainer video here: 

You can also find more information about domestic and family violence in Australia at:

You can learn more about the 16 Days of Activism at: 

# 2
Learn the signs of abuse.

Domestic and family violence in so prevalent in our communities - so it's important to know the early signs of abuse to protect yourself and the people around you.

Domestic and family violence isn't always physical - it can also manifest in less obvious ways, like emotional abuse, financial abuse, intimidation, stalking, coercive control and more.

To learn more about healthy relationships you can visit our fact sheets below:

If you need support you can contact one of the services below for help:

# 3
Promote that gender equality is for everyone.

30% of Australian men do not believe gender inequality exists.  To end gender-based violence, we need all genders to be passionate gender equality. Plus, gender equality has been proven to benefit all genders, including men! We’re asking you to engage with the men in your life on why gender equality is for everybody. Some helpful resources include:

# 4
Support your local shelter.

WAGEC supports 200 women and children who are experiencing homelessness, domestic and family violence and other disadvantage each night – and we wouldn’t be able to do it without the support of our community. 

In 2021-22, more than 272,000 people sought help from Specialist Homelessness Services. 60% of these were women. Domestic and family violence is one of the leading causes of homelessness for women and children.  

With such high and growing demand, frontline services need the support of community more than ever. Giving in whatever way you can – whether it’s giving your time as a volunteer, or material goods - makes such a positive difference to the people in crisis accommodation and the caseworkers who support them.

To find your local shelter you can visit these resources:  

# 5
Challenge gender stereotypes.

Gender stereotypes are harmful and lead to gender-based violence; as they create power imbalances between genders, create normalised violent beliefs and perpetuate a lack of respect towards women and non-binary people.  Education around gender stereotypes will prevent gender-based violence. A helpful resource are our new We Need To Talk Conversation Cards! They are an incredible resource for creating safe and respectful conversations that will help advocate in change. Buy them here.

# 6
Learn where you can get help.

Did you know that only two out of five Australians know where to get help if they are experiencing domestic and family violence?

It can be really overwhelming to know where to start if you need support but there is ALWAYS help available. No one should experience gender-based violence, and no one should go through it alone.

Your physical safety is always the most important thing. If you are ever in immediate physical danger, you should call the police on Triple Zero (000) and get to a safe place, if you can.

The kinds of support a person might need will depend on their specific circumstances. To help point you in the right direction, you can look at the resources below.

# 7
Challenge the gender health gap.

Female health is overlooked, understudied and underfunded. Endometriosis affects 14% of female bodies in Australia, yet it takes an average of 7 years to be diagnosed. 58% of women visited their doctor more than 10 times before being diagnosed with endo.

In the pursuit for gender equality, women’s health cannot be ignored – and that’s the Way you can help today - by elevating the importance of women’s health.

# 8
Learn how the gender pay gap impacts you.

There are lots of misconceptions about the gender pay gap, including whether it exists at all (hint: it does).  

It’s important to distinguish that the pay gap is different to equal pay - although this was only made a legal requirement in 1969. In Australia, individual men and women doing the same job legally must be paid the same amount.  

The gender pay gap refers to the difference between the overall average earning of men and women across organisations, industries and the workforce as a whole.  

Currently, the national gender pay gap in Australia is 13%. This means that for every dollar a man earns in Australia, a woman earns 87 cents.

Today, we’re asking you to find out how the pay gap impacts you by filling out the Gender Pay Gap Calculator here.  

For more information about the gender pay gap, you can visit the resources below:  

# 9
Support sexual consent education.

60% of Australian children aged 11-13 years old have watch pornography; and on average, they sex for the first time at 15 years old. Research also shows that 90% of mainstream pornography show acts of physical aggression or violence towards women. If children, or adults, are watching this kind of content and not also obtaining education around what consent is – we have a huge problem.

The way you can help end gender-based violence today is to support consent education within this country.

# 10
Learn about victim-blaming in the media.

The media we consume has a lot of power to influence and change our attitudes, especially when it comes to gender equality. But not all media is presented accurately.  

A study from ANROWS showed that when reporting on violence against women, almost 60% of articles included little or no reference to perpetrators.  What’s worse is that 15.5% of reports included information about the behaviour of women, and 16% of reports on sexual assault implied the woman put herself at risk.    

As recently as this month, we’ve seen headlines that position perpetrators as respected leaders and members of the community. Almost 15% of reports about gender-based violence include information to excuse men.    Looking at a news article and being able to tell what’s accurate, and when the lead is being buried is an important skill.

Today, your action is to test out your skills by looking at the news and seeing if you can identify any victim blaming in the headlines.  

You can learn more about victim blaming in the media by checking out the resources below: 

# 11
Learn about red flags and healthy relationships.

1 in 3 women have experienced intimate partner violence. So we need to work together to prevent it. For Day 11, we’re asking you learn how to spot red flags - both for yourself, and for others – and learn what healthy relationships should look like.

Red flags represent the early warning signs of unhealthy traits that could potentially be damaging and dangerous to the person or people involved in a relationship. Healthy relationships should be mutually supportive. Of course, resolving differences is part of every relationship but you should always feel safe, equal and respected. Below are resources that you can use for yourself, or as non-judgmental tools that you can send to someone you may be worried about.

# 12
Learn how to be an active ally or bystander.

It can be upsetting to know that someone in your life is experiencing violence, and it can be hard to know how to support them. The way you respond could have a huge impact on that persons journey to safety, healing and recovery - so it’s important to know what to do.

Today you can learn how to be a better ally by downloading the Be There app. This is a great tool to have on your phone to give you tips and resources about how to support different people who might be experiencing gender-based violence – from friends and relatives to co-workers and neighbours.

Being able to spot the signs of abuse, and knowing how to intervene safely could change a life.

# 13
Encourage positive masculinity.

Not all masculinity is toxic or inherently bad. Men’s relationships with other men can be a wonderful source of support and comfort for men. But when these relationships are used to promote toxic behaviours like aggression, dominance, control and hyper-sexuality (through things like sexual boasting), they are linked to higher levels of violence against women.

We need to encourage men to have positive peer relationships with other men – where they feel empowered to call out bad behaviour when they see it. We can encourage these ideas through encouraging men to have compassion and kindness towards themselves and others, listening to their experiences and validating their feelings and regularly checking in with male friends and loved ones.

Today’s action is exactly that – we're asking you check in on a male friend or loved one in your life. Whether you send a text or make a quick phone call, make sure you directly ask the person how they are - truly. Some men’s specific mental health resources include:

# 14
Elevate the voices of First Nations women.

Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander women experience disproportionately high rates of violence. Three in five First Nations Women have experienced physical or sexual violence perpetrated by an intimate partner.

Violence against Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander women is a serious Australian problem, and to prevent it we have to acknowledge that not all women experience gender-based violence in the same way. To address violence against Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander women, we also have to address the ongoing detrimental impacts of systemic racism and disadvantage that is perpetuated by colonial Australia.  

Today’s action is to elevate the voices of First Nations women and organisation. Below is a list of just some of the amazing First Nations women and organisations advocating for change. We encourage you to follow and support as many as you can!

First Nations women and organisations to follow:  

# 15
Acknowledge the mental load and unpaid labour.

On average, mothers who are in heterosexual marriages are performing 26 hours more unpaid work every week than fathers. The gap still exists even when both parents work full time, and this does not vary with wealth or education.

A study found that nearly 90% of mothers in committed heterosexual partnerships felt like they were solely responsible for organising the family’s schedules. It’s a lot, it’s exhausting – and it is directly related to gender stereotypes – as we culturally expected women to pick up all forms of domestic and caregiving labour.

Today, your action is to take this quiz to find out how much unpaid you are doing. And for bonus points; do it with your partner and make a plan to equalise if not equal.

Take the quiz here.

You can find more information about the mental load below:


# 16
Consume intersectional media.

Intersectionality describes how characteristics such as gender, ethnicity, ability, sexuality, religion and more can compound and interact to create overlapping forms of discrimination that could increase the risk of experiencing gender-based violence.   As a result of these compounding oppressions, some people may experience more disadvantage or barriers to help seeking than others.  You can learn more about intersectionality and why it’s important here.

Consuming media and content from diverse creators is one of the best ways to learn more about how other people experience the world. The final way you support this 16 Days of Activism, is to diversify the media you consume. For the next two weeks, we challenge you to consume content from intersectional creators.


Listen to:


If you or someone you know needs support in Australia call 1800 RESPECT (1800 737 732) or go to wagec.org.au