South Saharan Social Development Organization

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South Saharan Social Development Organization

Project Stage:
$1,000 - $10,000
Project Summary
Elevator Pitch

Concise Summary: Help us pitch this solution! Provide an explanation within 3-4 short sentences.

In rural communities where people perceive domestic violence as personal issues, Chichi is providing a holistic response to violence against women by fostering discussions and engaging women to become partners in providing solutions

About Project

Problem: What problem is this project trying to address?

In Nigeria an estimated 1 in every 4 women will experience violence in their life time. Due to cultural and religious differences most ethnic groups believe that the woman is not equal to the man and so she must always submit to his authority. They teach women that whatever the circumstance the man is in charge and she must submit unequivocally. When the woman goes to her family with reports of violence against her husband, she is often blamed for the aggression and is told that she provoked the attack and is sent back to her abuser. She is advised that it is part of marriage and she should endure and things will get better. Even when the man is confronted he often gets away with the equivalent of a slap on the wrist. The situation is no better when she reports to the police. In most cases, she is told to go home and settle with her husband as it is a “family issue.” Many women do not report the abuse as she is ashamed that her marriage is not working and for most women in Nigeria, divorce is not an option at all. So they suffer in silence. The laws in some parts of the country also work against these women forcing them to continue to live in these abusive relationships.

Solution: What is the proposed solution? Please be specific!

Chichi is working to end violence against women in rural Nigeria by creating a network of 'sister guardians' who mediate and advocate for survivors of assault and abuse in areas where there is very little support (and, in fact, stigmatization) of these women. The support is domiciled at the community level and is provided through women who understand the community and culture and are so easily accessible and non-threatening to the women needing help. The sister guardians also advocate for women’s rights and issues, thereby building their leadership skills and ultimately increasing women’s voices in the community