Ambassador Q&A: Ajay Ramdas
White Ribbon Ambassador Ajay Ramdas is excited about the opportunity to raise awareness and challenge violence against women with preventative and peaceful measures.
What is your day job?
I am the Senior Business Excellence and Risk Advisor at Moorabool Shire Council, Victoria, and in the evenings I also teach meditation at the Peace Meditation Group.
How long have you been a White Ribbon Ambassador?
I became a White Ribbon Ambassador in January 2016.
Why did you decide to become an Ambassador?
White Ribbon provides the platform to speak up against men’s violence against women. I decided to become a White Ribbon Ambassador because it is recognition, a title that gives me the opportunity to promote the White Ribbon movement to prevent men’s violence against women.
In what ways have you been involved in the White Ribbon Campaign?
I have been relentlessly promoting White Ribbon movement at work and in the community. I deliver talks on ‘Family violence and its ill effects’ at work on White Ribbon Day – attended by more than 50 people. I have delivered numerous presentations on White Ribbon at Toastmasters. I co-founded the Indian Men’s Support Network Group in Melbourne’s west to campaign against family violence prevalent in the Indian Community in Melbourne.
Why is Gender Equality important to you as an Ambassador?
Gender equality requires fair and equal treatment of women and men in life’s opportunities, resources, rewards and division of labour. Gender inequality hinders human development where women and men cannot enjoy basic human rights. When gender biases are embedded in culture, it is generally women are who are excluded in decision-making, access to justice and their share in economic and social resources.
I believe that gender equality creates an open and friendly environment to address gender discrimination and gender biases which give rise to violence against women. Gender equality does not mean that men and women are the same and should become the same, but it means that both women and men should share the same rights, liberties, autonomy, economic independence and could fully participate in society as equal partners. This also means that human independence is not constrained by anyone’s sex or gender.
What goals do you hope to accomplish as an Ambassador in the future?
At work, we are planning to organise a walk on White Ribbon Day this year, along with a few speeches. In the community, we are working towards initiating a project called ‘Indian Men’s Shed’ which will provide an avenue to educate and empower men to lead a harmonious and peaceful life free of violence.