When a person deals with problems such as domestic violence or abuse, it is of crucial importance that they have someone who they can talk to and who knows how to help them. With the Women for Change project, Center for Girls educates women to be points of contact for people who need help with these issues. On the 5th and 6th of May, Center for Girls provided training to the women leaders of this project in order for them to learn how to respond to issues that people need help with.
As a part of the Diakonia sponsored “Women for Change” project, 36 women from 18 villages (2 per village) in the Sri Don Chai sub-district have been selected to be women leaders. These women will act as a point of contact for their village in cases of, for example, domestic violence, family problems, or abuse. They will be able to speak with the ones involved, mediate, refer them to other organizations and/or help with reporting to the police when necessary. This way, as the local villages are close communities, people will have someone close to them who is able to assist them with problems. Center for Girls is training the women leaders and providing guidance and assistance when needed.
The main objectives of these training were to train the women leaders on topics such as gender-based violence, leadership, women’s rights, and national law, and to provide them with skills for giving basic counseling and assistance.
During the first day, the women discussed various introductory topics, such as gender equality, the different roles of men and women in society, domestic violence, and violence against women. They shared their thoughts about the meaning of violence and different types of violence. The most important examples of this were physical, sexual, economic, and emotional abuse. The open discussion about these sensitive topics raised the women’s confidence to take on these issues within their own community.
The following day, the program continued with case study projects. The participants were divided into four groups and were asked to prepare one of the following cases: a fight between a husband and wife, a father physically abusing his children, a husband physically abusing his wife, and child marriage. By means of discussion and roleplay, the women thought about what could happen during one of these situations, appropriate ways to respond, and effects that mediation and assistance by the women leaders could have. Finally, the participants brainstormed about the qualities that are needed to be a good leader and the duties that belong to a leader.
There will be more training in the future, but this was already a fantastic start for the women leaders in realizing their great potential and the positive effect they can have on the people and the issues in their village.
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