By; JACOB ONJEWU DICKSON
In matching words with action, the Africa Media Development Foundation (AMDF), has kick started its quest for ending violence against women and girls (VAWG) by hosting a one-day stakeholders town hall meeting on its newest project, Advocating For the Prevention Of Gender-Based Violence In 12 Communities Of Kaduna State through its Rise up Project titled: Preventing Gender Based Violence on Wednesday September 15n 2021 in Kaduna.
The meeting, held at the Arewa House Kaduna, had stakeholders from Kaduna North and Kajuru LGAs in attendance.
In his welcome remarks, Executive Director Africa Media Development Foundation (AMDF), Iliya Kure explained that the meeting is aimed at curbing incidents of violence against women and girls in the society.
He explained that the government has made laws to Prevent violence against women and girls, which they will be acquainted with during the meeting.
Kure said such informed the invitation to them to first converge at the meeting, before their communities are visited.
He advised them to pay attention during the meeting, so that the aim of their coming there will not be defeated.
“Violence Against Women and Girls (VAWG), is a global pandemic that affects 1 in 3 women in their lifetime. In Kaduna State, it is a grave human rights violation, and also a public health problem, affecting not only the physical and mental health of women, but also their lives and self-esteem. “To this end, Africa Media Development Foundation (AMDF), with support from Rise Up, a project of Public Health Institute (Johns Hopkins University USA), has commenced the implementation of a VAWG Project titled, “Advocating for the Prevention of Gender-Based Violence in 12 Communities of Kaduna State,” he said
Kure said that the project is aimed at curbing incidences of gender-based violence in identified communities in two Local Government Areas of Kaduna State, namely, Kaduna North and Kajuru.
He explained that during the 12-month implementation period, AMDF will use Community Based Action Volunteers (COMBAV) in project communities to serve as rural response strategy/team for reduction of incidences of Violence Against Women and Girls.
“The COMBAV Team is made up of Volunteers responsible for promoting gender equity within their communities; they will work as community-based action teams to challenge harmful practices and attitudes, sensitise residents on existing laws, as well as assist with referrals to relevant social services (Police, Social Welfare, Health, Commission on Human Rights, Traditional and Religious leaders), among others.
“COMBAV Team members will be trained on VAWG, Violence Against Persons Prohibition (VAPP) Law, Conflict Resolution, as well as Gender Equity and Social Inclusion (GESI) Policy of Kaduna State,” he said.
In her remarks, Elizabeth Fatima David, a former Director Female Education in the civil service, said she was excited to be at such a meeting.
Elizabeth who now is a consultant, was optimistic that the project would be succesful.