When we really look around, there are many things we can do to make a positive influence in the world. Some people donate money to their favorite cause or perhaps they may donate some time. They do so to help people who may be down on their luck or it may even be to save animals who have been abandoned.
Charity truly knows no boundaries, and you can take almost any skill and direct it in a charitable way. That is what tattoo artist Flavia Carvalho is doing when she found out her skill could be used for a very special reason. That reason is covering up scars.
Flavia Carvalho is turning women’s most personal insecurities into something beautiful and empowering. Between 10 and 15 women lose their lives to domestic violence every day in Brazil, and often the attitude is to blame the victim.
Feeling that it was time to take initiative, Carvalho decided to take her own stand against domestic violence, through the project “A Pele da Flor” (“Deeper than Skin”).
Last year on International Women’s Day, President Dilma Rousseff signed a brand-new expense into law that criminalized the discriminate murder of females merely for their gender.
- ” It must be kept in mind that femicide is the killing of women for being ladies, in a vicious cycle of violence and torture that breaks down the womanly identity,” stated Nadine Gasman, UN Women agent in Brazil. “This law strengthens the policy commitment made by the President to the country, a dedication to zero tolerance of gender-based violence and to focusing on the rights of female people with regard to empowerment and equality.”
The most troubling part about Brazil’s “femicide” is that is still rising, with annual casualties in the thousands increasing every year. In a 2013 research study, Brazil ranked as the greatest country on the planet of female homicide rates, and those most at danger are ladies of color.
From Inspiration to Initiative
“The idea of the project is very simple,” Carvalho said to the Huffington Post. “It is a voluntary service for tattooing over scars that have resulted from domestic violence or mastectomies. I run the project alone since no other tattoo artist has expressed interest in participating. I started the project quite recently, and I had no idea it would receive this much media attention.”
- Carvalho documented the yearlong project on her Facebook page, showing some beautiful before-and-after photos with the stories of each woman who came to her for help.
This was the tattoo done for the survivor of the nightclub stabbing. What was once a reminder of her attempted murder is now a beautifully vibrant scene of birds and flowers.
- The young artist constantly suggests her customers consult a physician or skin doctor prior to picking to get a tattoo, in order for the tattoo to be safe and enduring. She also enables her customers to select and help establish their designs.
The tattoos have covered all sorts of abuse scars, from gunshot injuries to stabbing scars and burn marks. One such example is a small gunshot scar on a woman’s knee that acted as a constant reminder of her violent ex-partner. Carvalho changed the scar into a sign of nerve and strength; a colorful owl spreading its wings.
- The founding objective of the project was to raise awareness of the prevalent issue of violence against females in Brazil. Carvalho has revealed how grateful she is to the press for choosing up and sharing her story.
“The sense of affection, sisterhood, and camaraderie is deeper than I ever imagined. They contact me from all over the country, as well as from abroad. They come to the studio, share their stories of pain and resilience, and they show me their scars.”
- Carvalho states the feedback she receives from ladies is that they are uplifted and inspired from their new tattoos. She remains in touch with the majority of her customers and is genuinely gratified by how their self-confidence is drastically improved by their Facebook feeds and photos. “It is transformative,” she states.
Many news organizations and scholars have actually dubbed Brazil’s domestic violence problem as a “femicide.” Females are sexualized from a very young age, and the lives of numerous Brazilian ladies have ended up being knotted with the world of date-rape drugs, human trafficking, and domestic violence
If you are a victim of domestic violence
1. Comprehend that males and females can succumb to abuse and know that you are not to blame, your abuser is.
2. Seek instant medical attention if needed
3. Go to a domestic violence shelter, which you can be directed to online.
4. Look for support from people who care; be it a relative, friend or colleague. Tell them in a private place that is safe.
5. Develop a security strategy. If you have kids, ensure you have a method of leaving a potentially violent circumstance.
6. Submit for a Protective Order against your abuser so lawfully they can not bother you. Keep your Protective Order with you at all times.
7. Appear to court on your set date on time and bring all required paperwork, do not bring your children. “Talk straight to the judge, not the respondent. Inform the truth. Be polite, genuine, and speak plainly. Bring police reports, pictures, and affidavits.”