Non-governmental organisations and government agencies in Zimbabwe are campaigning to Leave Noone Behind: End Violence against women and girls.
In Mutare, Women’s Action and Support Centre (WASC), a Non-Profit Making Trust has joined the bandwagon of organisations in combating gender based violence (GBV) against women and girls which is now rampant in the country.
In an interview with WASC Programs Officer Mr Tapiwa Chibodo in the eastern border city recently, he said they are going to do a door to door campaign in urban areas.
“In 2015 we campaigned against GBV by marching in the streets and last year we did a workshop. This year we have planned to do something new early December, preparations have been finalised to do a door to door campaign in the 16 days of activism.”
He added: “We did an assessment and observed that messages were not reaching other women, so we are confident that door to door campaign will leave noone behind,” said Chibodo.
He said the campaign will target all, especially women and young girls raising awareness on GBV issues.
“WASC is going to educate women on what is GBV because some women do not know what it means. There is need to educate them on their rights that are enshrined in the constitution, women should know that they are protected by the rule of the land,’’ he said.
WASC will raise awareness on the rights of women using posters which are going to be distributed in Mutare throughout the 16 days of activism.
The organisation has identified problems which poses GBV against women and provide solutions to such problems.
"We have identified that women’s lack of economic resources is one of the major contributors to GBV against women. So the organisation came up with strategies to economically empower women to combat GBV against them."
''There is a women’s fund program namely Chisipiti Oasis Women’s Fund which offers small capital funding to women engaged in small projects. It is available for women who do not meet prerequisites needed in accessing finances in the mainstream financial institutions,’’ said Chibodo.
WASC provides entrepreneurial skills training on demand such as financial literacy, sewing, baking, and braiding.
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Farai Shawn Matiashe is a freelancer based in Zimbabwe who is passionate about writing about gender based violence and the abuse of commercial sex workers.
La fecha llegó y desde diferentes partes del país emprendimos nuestro camino al centro, donde suceden muchas cosas. Comenzamos a llegar, muchas no nos conocíamos, otras no teníamos muy claro el objetivo de lo que nos reunía, pero todas con la mejor actitud de compartir, reencontrarnos y construir entre pares.
Empezaron las actividades temprano, dialogando sobre la situación actual de temas como los ODS, la salud
sexual y reproductiva, diversidad sexual, VIH, servicios de salud amigables para jóvenes, participación juvenil
en la toma de decisiones, entre otros temas de interés para nosotras.
Poco a poco las conversaciones se tornaban más avanzadas y técnicas, todas comenzábamos a desinhibirnos y el
diálogo fluía, comenzaba a emerger no sólo la experiencia teórica sino también las experiencias de campo,
nuestros contextos personales y las experiencias vividas desde nuestras trincheras. Todo fluía de manera
armoniosa y la cantidad de conocimiento e información aumentaba entre los minutos y las horas que corrían.
Terminamos la primera jornada y llegó el tiempo de convivir de forma más amena, dejando a un lado el peso del
conocimiento, las luchas y demás.
Amanece, el sol llega y la segunda sesión de trabajo comienza. El momento del diagnóstico general se había
terminado y era hora de articular nuevos procesos a partir de las zonas de las cuales veníamos a esta reunión.
Todos los equipos trabajamos, poniendo en práctica el conocimiento adquirido y la experiencia de cada una de
Buscamos diseñar protocolos de investigación, para obtener información cualitativa y cuantitativa sobre los temas
que nos competen en la población a la que pertenecemos y por la cual trabajamos, las juventudes.
Llegó la noche y era hora de que la segunda sesión terminará. Después de una rica cena volvimos a reencontrarnos
para seguir conversando y conociéndonos en lo personal. Muchas historias, relatos, experiencias y sobre todo
coincidencias entre lo que hemos vivido. Sin importar que nos separaran kilómetros de distancia y varias horas
de viaje, éramos diferentes pero nos sentíamos iguales.
Amaneció y llegó la hora de la última jornada. Era momento de
presentar los avances de nuestros protocolos de investigación, mostrar
lo que trabajaremos posteriormente y retroalimentarnos unas a otras. El
tiempo se iba agotando, teníamos que partir pronto para regresar a casa,
aun cuando llevábamos un par de días sintiéndonos en familia. Llegó la
hora de hacer acuerdos sobre los proyectos, los siguientes pasos en el
proceso de ACT! 2030 México y demás. Terminamos la jornada con
una comida, para después entre abrazos de despedida, sonrisas y un
poco de melancolía, dejar la promesa de volvernos a encontrar pronto.
El taller de datos para la incidencia, por parte del equipo de ACT! 2030
México fue una experiencia genial. Una oportunidad de aprender y
recapitular conversaciones sobre diversos temas que trabajamos pero
sobre todo, fue una ocasión especial para reencontrarnos unas con otras,
para fortalecer nuestras ganas de seguir trabajando por nosotras, las
juventudes, siempre recordando “no dejar a nadie atrás”.
By Rubén Ávila. Nuevo León, México
Del 6 al 8 de octubre se llevó a cabo el taller “Datos para la Incidencia”, organizado por ACT! 2030 México, aquí
participamos personas que colaboramos en organizaciones de la sociedad civil relacionados a temas de
prevención de VIH y Sida, otras infecciones de transmisión sexual, derechos sexuales y reproductivos. El objetivo
fue tener información reciente y relevante en torno al VIH y trabajar desde esa mirada con problemáticas
regionales que aquejan nuestras comunidades, en este sentido generamos, entre otras cosas, un ejercicio de
protocolo de investigación.
Sobre el espacio Casa Xitla, me queda el buen sabor de boca al conocer este lugar tan tranquilo para trabajar, las
personas que administran dicho lugar son muy cordiales y sensibles a la problemática del medio ambiente, tal es
esta visión que en las instalaciones de Casa Xitla tiene un sistema eco sustentable donde reciclan el agua de uso
diario. Al ser antes un convento, tiene instalaciones muy grandes y cómodas para convivir, salir a tomar aire
fresco y realizar algunas dinámicas como parte del taller.
Referente a los expositores, son personas muy preparadas, todos/as abonaron al qué hacer del proceso de
investigación científico, sobre métodos y técnicas de recolección de datos para la generación de investigaciones
confiables y de relevancia social. Me gustó su intervención en general porque supieron aterrizar los temas de una
manera muy amena y simplificada, promoviendo en todo momento la participación del grupo, el intercambio de
información y la socialización de las experiencias que nos acompañaron a cada asistente desde su estado y ciudad
Los y las compañeras asistentes, personas con grandes cualidades y aportaciones, enriquecieron con su
participación cada momento del taller, se percibía una energía muy positiva y propositiva, tomando con buena
actitud la información, que, si bien fue mucha y muy importante, fue asertiva y despejó muchas dudas y prejuicios
que uno en lo personal arrastra referente al VIH.
Al tener espacios para convivir como las comidas, las pláticas al final de las jornadas de trabajo, pudimos
intercambiar las redes sociales de nuestros compañeros/as y conocer más de cerca sus actividades y qué es lo que
hacen las asociaciones donde ellas y ellos colaboran.
En lo personal, me siento satisfecho por participar en este tipo de talleres, donde en todo momento recibimos un
nuevo conocimiento que nos permite crecer como personas y como profesionales en esta materia; al tener
información de gente experta y que ha realizado investigación en torno a los temas, me permitió transmitir dicha
información a los espacios donde colaboro en mi localidad.
Como pendientes, el equipo de estados del norte nos comprometimos a realizar un protocolo de investigación
para contribuir a la construcción de datos científicos sobre la respuesta al VIH en nuestra región y seguir al
pendiente de la agenda de ACT! 2030 México.
Muchas gracias por el esfuerzo en este proyecto y seguir confiando en la juventud.
By Francisco Díaz. Chihuahua, Mexico.
Justice for survivors of sexual violence remains to be an illusion that they seem to chase despite the enactment of the sexual offenses act which was enacted in response to curb the escalating sexual violence. According to the Kenya Domestic Household Survey (KDHS) 2014, 14 percent of women aged 15-49 reported having experienced sexual violence.
According to the Access to Justice Report, conducted by UN Women in 2015, 72.6 percent of survivors were unwilling to pursue justice; while only five percent of the survivors seen in facilities in 2014 were willing to go to court owing to insensitivity of law enforcers. The enactment of the Sexual Offences Act has not been matched with adequate training and dissemination of the Act to law-enforcement officers and relevant justice system agents.
Most of the police stations don’t have the p3 forms which is a crucial document required to be filled by the police at the station and a medical provider hence victims are made to go print or photocopy the form so it can be filled. The National guidelines on management of sexual violence state that p3 forms for victims of sexual violence including rape should be free but the trends in most counties in their Finance Acts is that they are imposing a fee on the p3 form. Most victims of sexual violence come from poor families hence this deters survivors from reporting and creates a barrier of access to justice.
There are few medical providers who are allowed to fill the p3 forms and this extends the time within which one can access medical attention and have p3 form filled which is a document required to institute a case. With the nature of injuries during rape which tend to heal fast and with the doctors being overwhelmed as they deal with hundreds of cases daily, there is a chance that when they get to examine a victim most of the wounds will have healed hence evidence destroyed and making conviction of the perpetrator very hard.
Despite there being such progressive laws in Kenya like the Sexual Offenses Act which was enacted in response to curb the escalating sexual violence, without proper implementation of the laws and policies by the stakeholders and lack of commitment by the parties the realization of justice is just a theory.
Kevin Gitau Mwangi is an advocate of the high court currently practicing in Kenya and currently working with a Non-Governmental organization called Kenya Ethical and Legal Issues Network (KELIN) under the sexual reproductive health and rights to ensure that human rights on reproductive health are integrated into policies, laws, and regulations
Participar en el Taller “Datos para la Incidencia” de ACT!2030 ha sido una experiencia inigualable. Tuve la
oportunidad de conocer a muchas personas de toda la República Mexicana, a quienes nos unían distintas causas
en común, en especial la de generar cambios y avances en materia de salud sexual y reproductiva. ¡Eso sí que me
motivó a participar activamente durante todo el taller!
Fue mi primera experiencia de este tipo, aprendí cosas sumamente enriquecedoras, como que las personas jóvenes
lo somos no por razón de nuestra edad, sino por –entre muchas otras- nuestra capacidad para contribuir de forma
positiva en la toma de decisiones respecto a situaciones que nos interesan, en este caso en temas de salud y
derechos sexuales y reproductivos.
También pude fortalecer mis conocimientos sobre investigación y entendí la relevancia de emplear mecanismos
de contraloría social; todo esto se traduce en herramientas que beneficiarán directamente a la organización de la
sociedad civil a la que pertenezco, Progrésale A. C.
Sin duda alguna, me gustaría asistir a nuevos eventos organizados por ACT! 2030 México y así continuar
sumando esfuerzos para dar seguimiento a los Objetivos de Desarrollo Sostenible. ¡Entre más personas se
integren, los resultados tendrán un mayor impacto!
By Andrea Avilez. Mexico City, Mexico
Just as I was about to fall asleep a little after midnight there was a knock on the window of the car we were sleeping in, my friends and I were requested to go prepare late night tea for the mourners gathered and singing at the night vigil. Need we be reminded that we had been instructed to be up by 4am to sweep the yard and to start boiling water for the mourners to bath before starting on the preparation for breakfast and lunch.
Earlier when we had arrived the relatives were pleasantly happy that the daughter in law and her ‘helpers’ had arrived from the city to take over the hard labor. It was indeed hard labor and the fact that the reception we received had not been pleasant did made the work and experience much harder. I felt like crying more often than I had to say hello to anyone that arrived, not crying to mourn my father-in-law but because of the emotional abuse I was going through just because I was a daughter-in-law.
Day one was done a little after 1am and we surely were up by 4am to start on the chores. As some of my husband’s friends started assisting us with fetching water from the well so as to save our backs, they were soon stopped as it was not permitted to help the daughter-in-law to perform her duties. The same friends came over to assist in cutting the beast that had been slaughtered for consumption at the funeral lunch, but once again they were stopped because the cooking and the kitchen was not a place for men, that was the women’s duty.
At this moment I was numb, actually I thought I was but I was not ready for what was still to come. As tradition says, the daughter-in-law has to carry a bucket of water on her head and crawl to the grave with it. I thought it ended there, no one prepared me for anything more. As I finished pouring out the water and as I was about to get up I felt two whips strike across my back, they called it tradition.
Tinashe Madamombe is a freelance writer who is passionate about women's empowerment and development. She enjoys writing opinion feminist pieces that challenge the status core
Get to ACT! 2030 was a coincidence but it was an important one. From October 6 to 8 2017, a group of young
people interested in issues related to sexual and reproductive rights, HIV, sexuality, research and advocacy were gather by ACT! 2030 Mexico to attend the workshop "Data for advocacy".
Now it is the memory of an experience that was full of new information and new learning, which continues to transcend my day to day, as the acquired knowledge has been very useful for my research and advocacy work.
The central idea that I take away from that hard work weekend is the relevance of having data that allow us to have evidence for political advocacy. In that sense, for me the presentations that were given on international instruments that have taken into account the issues of interest were very important because they are a fundamental tool for advocacy.
Specifically, for my work within Fundación Arcoíris por el respeto a la diversidad sexual, knowing the Montevideo Consensus, a document considered the most progressive by the discussions that the feminist movement placed on its agenda, is relevant to the advocacy work related to gender and sexuality. In this regard, I emphasize the specific importance of the priority measure 36 of the operational guide which states: “Design policies and programs to eradicate discrimination based on sexual orientation and gender identity in the exercise of sexual rights and the manifestations thereof”.
On the other hand, given that I am in the research area of Fundación Arcoíris, knowing how to develop a research
protocol that aims to obtain data for advocacy is relevant and this was my favorite part of the workshop. Doing
research is something that I'm passionate about, however, we often don’t know what to do with the results we
get. Now, after the workshop, I consider that one of the aims of research is political advocacy and management
since in this way research contributes to social transformation.
By teams we were working, throughout the workshop, a research protocol. I believe that this activity was very
practical and allowed me to meet and collaborate with other organizations. Besides, it was very fun, it was
enriching since, at the same time that the theory was heard, we were applying it in our proposal in such a way
that we were able to write a problem definition, an objective, the rationale and we began to carry out a
questionnaire and the guide for a semi-structured interview.
Finally, I would like to mention that the mainstreaming of the youth perspective was interesting and I find it very
important since we tend to be a population that is little listened to and taken into account in decision-making
processes. Working with young people and for young people is very valuable because now we have to talk and
Thanks ACT! 2030 for this experience!
The 6th to 8th of October 2017 were days of recognition, alliance and preparation.
In Mexico City around 60 young people (between 20-30 years old) concerned about the defence of sexual and reproductive health and rights of LGBTI + population, women, men and adolescents, were gathered. 60 young people who were mobilized from their different states, there was representation from the north (Chihuahua, Sinaloa, Baja
California, Nuevo Leon, Tamaulipas, Tijuana); from the centre (Puebla, Tlaxcala, Morelos, Mexico City, State
of Mexico, Hidalgo, among others); from the southeast (Mérida, Campeche and Quintana Roo); from the west
(Guadalajara, Guanajuato and Querétaro); and from the south (Guerrero and Oaxaca).
The three days were of a lot of work, a very ambitious agenda that was achieved. The team of ACT! 2030 Mexico
presented to these representatives of civil society, some students, tools to influence the public policy of the
country; among these we can highlight social accountability, the Making it count curriculum, and especially the
research and development of data as a base to the claims made to the government.
The previous ones were very important approaches, mainly because they bring civil society organizations closer to alternatives to negotiate vis-à-vis with local governments, which is quite interesting due to the process of change that the Mexican public administration has undergone.
Personally, as a teacher and close to the beginning of ACT! 2030 Mexico, it was exciting and satisfying to meet
so many young people who work hard to contribute to this society, which demystifies the idea that "young people
are apathetic or disinterested of their environment".
The experience in this workshop has taught me that there are still things to improve, both, in the way that we mobilize and in the tools to make ourselves heard; the technique
used during the workshop of combining academics and activism shows promising results, in addition to making
visible issues that for social reasons we usually do not touch. The point, perhaps, is not to see the government
totally as an enemy but as an actor with whom one must sit down to talk. Finally, it is worth highlighting
recognition for the achievements made by the ACT! 2030 Mexico team in its work to participate and influence
I hope very much that this example of preparation, guidance and accompaniment among peers will be replicated
in other alliances, networks of civil society organizations and activists, I repeat, it seems to me that this is a worth
proposal in order to achieve common objectives, since civil society organizations are close to people and its
perspectives are worth to take up.
By Juan Pablo Romo
The first step to pursue social change is to build coalitions of people that seek the same goal as you do, for me that was the opportunity to acknowledge human rights activists from the whole country during the ACT! 2030 Mexico workshop.
From Friday to Sunday, the common goal was one: to learn about data based advocacy in the sexual and reproductive rights agenda. I could barely call myself an “activist”, my loose experience within the area is about legal analysis of court cases, law and public policy from Guatemala, Colombia and Mexico during my span as research intern in the Latin America Programme of Planned Parenthood Global.
The diversity of profiles working together during the workshop can be described with a single word: fantastic. From feminists, HIV awareness activists, lawyers, medical doctors, psychologists, sociologists, public policy experts from a wide range of ages and places of origin fills me with hope. As the communication persists and we can find common ground involving ourselves in the Sustainable Development Goals, I’m sure that Mexico can be a champion in the Sexual and Reproductive Health and Rights Agenda.
Even though the workshop’s length was about less than 25 hours, the gap of information was vast and great. As an instance of some of the information we received: implementation of the SDGs in the local agendas; the situation of sexual and reproductive health in Mexico; data based advocacy; qualitative and quantitative data; research strategies; social accountability; research ethics; UNAIDS activity in Mexico; data analysis, to name just a few even though I have listed many of them.
As I stated at the beginning, ACT! 2030 is the perfect opportunity to merge talent in order to achieve a better chapter for humankind. This new chapter shall be one where the Sustainable Development Goals become the basis for the future.