Former Miss Universe 1999 1st runner-up Miriam Quimbao and Bb. Pilipinas 2020 candidate Patrizia Garcia are joining the fight against gender-based violence.
“Gender-based violence is not and will never be acceptable,” said Patrizia, during a webinar called FamiLIGTASPH which aims to educate the public on GBV recently.
“It really has an impact not just on the physical and mental aspect of a person but the society as a whole…My message for the victims of GBV; just remain strong, break the silence and do not tolerate that we should be treated this way.” she said.
Miriam, 45, told her own story of trials which she suffered in her first relationship.
“I really think I should have done something differently and whenever he will raise his voice towards me I will raise my hand and tell him no,” Miriam said.
She added: “Also, very recently, the reason why I became an advocate because I attended a friend of mine who experienced violence (physical abuse) and when she called me she was already staying in a friend of hers … and I allowed her to stay in my place and assisted her to the hospital (because of bruises) and eventually she gets back together with that man, they become married, and she did not even file a case against him.”
Miriam said that no one deserves to be treated that way.
Hosted by broadcaster Karen Davila, the webinar featured the joint efforts of the United States Agency for International Development (USAID) and local feminist chat-service Lunas Collective.
Michelle Lang-Alli, an official of USAID, said that gender-based violence is affecting 2.5 million women in the Philippines; lockdowns against the COVID-19 pandemic in the country have increased the risks for women and children to suffer abuse.