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In recognition of Domestic Violence Awareness Month, the Guru Nanak Gurdwara Smethwick, located on High Street in England, was illuminated in purple each night. As part of the warmhearted initiative, the gurdwara has partnered with the philanthropic organisation known Black Country Women's Aid.

Standing together against domestic violence 

The colour purple is significant because it is the colour of the purple ribbon, which is the symbol of the campaign to raise awareness about domestic violence. The gurdwara president Jaswinder Singh, together with Raj Thind and Raj Gill from the Black Country Women's Aid, was present for the event on Thursday night when the temple was first illuminated in purple light.

Mr Singh said that the use of the colour purple to illuminate the Gurdwara building is more than just a symbolic gesture in light of the rise in the incidence of domestic violence that has occurred during the Covid-19 pandemic. In order to effect change, we need to talk honestly about the issue of domestic violence and identify the ways in which it impacts our communities, our families, and our lives. The issue of violence in the homes cannot be overlooked.

Sara Ward, chief executive of Black Country Women's Aid said that she was overwhelmed by the support from friends at Guru Nanak Gurdwara Smethwick for the 'Go Purple' campaign. It especially meant a lot in the tough times when the whole world was fighting against the deadly virus. She further added that the compassion shown by volunteers at the gurudwara for the victims of abuse was unwavering.

She further added,“Lighting up this beautiful building purple for a second year will show the whole community that we continue to challenge violence within the home. We stand together in supporting victims and we send a message of hope to all that there are safe spaces in Sandwell to get help and support."

Sikhs believe in equality and fighting against any oppression or misconduct based on caste, creed, gender, or faith. This empowering initiative is a step towards standing up for those who are victims of domestic abuse and providing them support in times of dire need. 

 

*Based on an article by Jamie Brassington, published in Express & Star on October 6 , 2020

 

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