"The butterfly (la mariposa) for us is a symbol of the desire to realise our dreams, spread our wings... fighting with the strength of our rights." Martha Munguiá, Nicaraguan Alliance of Women's Centres
Rape and sexual abuse is widespread in Nicaragua, and two-thirds of reported rapes are against girls and young women under the age of 17.
Young survivors face extra trauma if they become pregnant because of the rape. For these women and girls the idea of giving birth may be unbearable, and the younger they are, the greater the danger to their health. But in Nicaragua they have no choice.
Since 2008, the law has made all forms of abortion in all circumstances a crime, even where the health and life of the woman is in danger or where she is the victim of rape or incest.
|2,000 people created butterflies for AI's campaign at the Hay festival, UK|
There is little or no help from the government who have failed to prevent sexual abuse and to provide care to survivors or to guarantee they receive justice and reparation. An ineffective justice system often means cases collapse and attackers walk free.
Young rape survivors need psychological, medical and legal support and help to rebuild their lives.
On 28 September 2011, women's organisations and the Nicaraguan people will be marching to demand the repeal of the country's total abortion ban and an end to widespread violence against women and girls.
Please stand in solidarity with these young women and help make their voices heard by sending a butterfly and a message of hope in time for their demonstration in September.
You can create a butterfly online or make a paper one, but paper versions must be sent in to AI by 19 August.
Your butterfly will join the march in Nicaragua .
Some 31, 414 people in the UK have already created colourful butterflies. Together we can make the government listen and act to protect the rights of girls and women. Create a butterfly today.