Gender-based violence undermines the health, dignity, security and autonomy of its victims, yet it remains shrouded in a culture of silence.
A new training called ‘SASA!’ is adamant about the crucial action to change social practices that can prevent violence against women and girls. It uses a community owned and driven approach to increase awareness on gender-based violence and helps women and girls participate fully in development.
Through funding support from the Australian Government, UN Women and Raising Voices, the training was brought to Port Moresby from September 5 – 9, to Pacific-based organisation representatives from Papua New Guinea, Fiji, Kiribati, Solomon Islands and Vanuatu.
Australian High Commission Counsellor for Gender and Sports, Susan Ferguson, emphasised the Australian Government’s commitment to supporting partners from across the Pacific to prevent violence.
Ms Ferguson acknowledged that, “Prevention is not simple. It requires action on many levels. The ‘SASA!’ model provides some new thinking and skills for Pacific-based organisations who are already working to prevent violence.”
The five-day ‘SASA!’ training provided an introduction to the model and approach by imparting skills to Pacific groups to customise the model for use in different cultural contexts.
Participants plan to integrate and adapt the strategies learnt, into their existing or new prevention programs.