This Friday, I'll be taking to the stage in Trafalgar Square, and shouting from the top of my lungs that we do not have to be fed up, that we do not have to accept this. At midday I'll be joining One Billion Rising, a global campaign that has made it its mission to end violence against women, and rising up for justice for women here in the UK and far further afield. We will call for political change, from mandatory sex education in schools, action to ensure that women in immigration detention centres are safe from violence, and the repeal of visa laws that tie domestic workers to their employers and put them at serious risk of exploitation. We will dance and sing - and we will make ourselves heard.
FGM needs to be put on political centre stage. It needs the hashtags, the likes, the virals to bring the silent suffering of millions out in public discourse. Until such time 140 million girls and women will continue to be told that their genitals have been cut and mutilated to make them "clean" and "beautiful".
The prevalence of violence against women and this latest research ought to shock us out of our complacency. We simply cannot go on shutting our eyes and hoping the problem will solve itself. As well as tackling violence when it occurs, we must seek to prevent it happening in the first place. Compulsory sex and relationship education in schools is key to this.
Fiona Bruce MP recently stated that the breakdown of marriage was a "public health emergency". She couldn't be further from the truth. The real public health emergency in the UK is domestic violence, from which two women die per week. MPs like Bruce should be supporting women for leaving abusive marriages, not judging them.
The afternoon sun is beating down on the mountain town of Copan Ruinas in central Honduras. We are a short drive away from San Pedro Sula, a city with one of the highest homicide rates in the world. Gang warfare has divided the city for years, but the violence has steadily increased since the 2009 military coup when the Honduran Army overthrew President Manuel Zelaya.
It depresses me that a woman who is the victim of domestic violence and who is only in court because she has allegedly been defrauded, suddenly finds herself the centre of the whole proceeding. It depresses me that tabloids in the UK released articles implying that perhaps we had all been a little too hard on Charles Saatchi, her abuser.
Rising early means beating the unbearable heat that makes her journey on foot with a heavy load of maize on her head even more arduous. It means getting to the border crossing before custom officials - who frequently ask her for a bribe or worse - and securing a place at the market ahead of her competitors.
Violence against women often appears to be so pervasive and complex that it seems insurmountable. But it is preventable. For the first time, a new UN study on men and violence includes data from men themselves, across a number of countries, that tells us why some men use violence against women and how this can be prevented... We must address power imbalances between men and women and promote ways of being a man that value respect, non-violence and equality. This is possible.
As a performer, I totally understand how powerful music and drama is to express yourself and get difficult emotions out into the open. Singer and dancer Mary is one such person. She puts heartfelt emotion into every single performance in an attempt to turn her painful past into a positive force. Her powerful lyrics and support from an incredible project have turned this once shy woman into a local celebrity in the rural part of eastern Uganda where she lives with her husband and children. I recently met Mary, 48, and heard her remarkable story...
We are joined by academics, professionals and policy makers all over the world whose cumulative experience and expertise points to the same fact, over and over again: there is a relationship between the ubiquity of representations of women as sexual objects and the dangerous attitudes and behaviours that underpin and perpetuate violence against women.