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Multi-brand project seeks to raise awareness against gender violence in Puerto Rico

A group of local companies have joined to create awareness against gender violence through the “Unidas Somos Más” initiative.

The movement cited recent statistics from the Women’s Ombudsman Office that show that the Puerto Rico Police registered 4,825 incidents of domestic violence between January and early November 2022. In a similar period, the Gender Equality Observatory reported 62 direct femicides, including 14 intimate and 45 still under investigation or without information, and a total of 20 disappeared women and girls.

And as the numbers continue to rise, the “Unidas Somos Más” initiative has called upon journalist and survivor of gender violence, Luz Nereida Vélez, to serve as spokesperson.

“Being part of this project allows me to serve as an inspiration and an example that we can break the chains of gender violence; that we can be stronger women, without fear and full of faith and hope,” she said.

The Unidas Somos Más initiative will benefit Hogar Nueva Mujer, a nonprofit entity that offers services focused on security, education, empowerment and economic and emotional self-sufficiency of individuals and their communities to contribute to eradicate violence in Puerto Rican families.

The U By Kotex, Poise, Suave, Dove, Hershey’s and Colgate brands will donate 25 cents for the purchase of each product sold at Walmart and Walmart Pickup stores between Feb. 1-28, 2023, so that the entity can continue to help women with children who have to leave their homes in search of a safe place to protect themselves and get services that allow them to get out of the cycle of violence.

“Contributing to the well-being of the communities has always been one of our main commitments since we arrived on the Island 30 years ago. We are proud to participate in this important alliance because we are aware of the serious situation of gender violence in our country and its consequences for society,” said Viviana Mercado, senior manager of Corporate Affairs at Walmart Puerto Rico.

“We need to continue supporting women who are victims of gender violence so that they do not feel alone and can face and escape from this reality to achieve a better future for themselves and their families,” said Catherine Mir, trade marketing kead of Kimberly-Clark Puerto Rico.

“Through ‘Unidas Somos Más,’ we not only express our solidarity, but we can also reinforce the education that our society needs to eradicate this evil,” she said.

Walmart and the participating brands invite consumers to join this campaign whose goal is to reach a donation of $25,000 to Hogar Nueva Mujer, which was established in 1990 by a group of women and men committed to the search for peace and family justice as a response to the problem of domestic violence.

“In our society too often, women are mistreated to the point of putting their safety and that of their children at risk, which makes it necessary to provide them with a shelter and support, guidance and counseling services that make it easier for them to get out of the cycle of violence,” said Emma Santiago, director of Hogar Nueva Mujer.

In addition to temporary shelter, the entity offers CAISS, transitional housing and relocation programs, as well as community, minors, self-management and legal advocacy, and psychological services.

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This story was written by our staff based on a press release.

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