When was the project initiated? or When are you planning to begin?
The original idea was first sparked in 1998 as a result of the numbers of young women who were seeking help from our support services. We found that huge numbers were coming forward and talking about abuse and violence which could have been prevented and dealt with sooner if they had had greater awareness and information. Many of the girls had not even known that the sexual abuse they had experienced was wrong and they had no knowledge of what they could do about it. In many cases the girls did not know they would be believed or could get help. in some cases there was clear evidence that they had been completely at a loss about what to do to stay safe and blamed themselves for the abuse. Clearly there was an identified need to teach children about personal safety and abuse issues. Also, there was a need to tackle the gender inequality, racism and homophobia that had sometimes led to abusive behaviours.
Describe the profile of the beneficiaries of this project
Mainly children and young people are the beneficiaries. Initially we planned to develop the resource and try them in communities to make sure they were effective. We measured a base line prior to trying the programmes and followed it us after delivery of the programmes. once we were certain that there was an evidence base to the work, we began to develop further resources and programmes until we had programmes for all ages and abilities. then we began to roll it out and try it in different cultures and areas to ensure it was effective.
We are now at the stage of delivering these programmes to around 1600 young people a month and training around 150 teachers and youth workers in how to deliver also. Every child in schools we work in receives a minimum of 6 sessions. in time this will cascade so that more and more children and young people will be reached.
Around one third of young people disclose personal harm during the delivery and interventions include both formal and non formal actions to support the young person.
After initial delivery to whole school more focused work is then carried out to address any identified issues which were raised during the programme delivery.
What is your initiative’s implementation strategy?
Development of the resources and the programmes followed by a thorough pilot and independent evaluation to measure effectiveness. Forming of partnerships with parents, children, young people, teachers, social services and police to plan the long and short term goals.
Encouraging whole communities to work together with a prevention mindset rather than waiting till abuse and violence occurs before taking action and getting the resources to stop fire-fighting and stop the fires from being lit. Getting to the core reasons for violence and abuse and tackling them in a focused and sustained manner.
In your opinion, what are the main barriers or obstacles in connection with this theme?
Funding is the main barrier and the reason it has taken time. resources go to criminal justice and heath services to provide services for survivors of sexual abuse before they go to prevention work with very young children to teach about safety.
What type of partnerships you have or intend to generate strategic alliances with for the development of this initiative? Choose all that apply
State departments or areas, International organizations, Non-Government organizations, Social organizations, Universities, Schools.
Describe with whom you have generated these alliances and how
We have developed partnerships with many schools in order to run our programmes within the schools. this has taken time and is hard work but worthwhile.
As we roll our programmes out, we bring together partnerships of different agencies in the area. we provide them with information and get them to work together and think about the prevention approach with children and young people.
We have formed partnerships with organisation such as women's aid and rape crisis in different areas so that they are available to learn how to use our prevention programmes, they can then deliver in their own areas to local schools and can provide services for young people who disclose abuse. We do the same with the police and offer training to them if they go into schools.
We have partner agencies in Poland and Palestine who are translating our resources and programmes and piloting them in these countries. they are also about to adapt them culturally.
We are partners with the Kurdish and Middle Eastern Women's Refugee Organisation based in London and have developed resource with them to tackle issues such as honour killings, FGM and forced marriage. They are also rolling the programmes out to the Middle East with us.
We are partners with Broken Rainbow in London. This is the national organisation for LGBT people who have experienced domestic violence. With them, we have developed resource to tackle domestic abuse in same sex relationships, tackle inequalities, hate crimes and homophobia
What are the main results generated and/or expected to generate by means of this initiative?
An increase in young people disclosing abuse and personal harm and getting help
A reduction in gendered violence, racism, homophobic.
A change in attitudes that lead to abuse and violence.
What is the main impact that your initiative might generate?
A slow but measurable change in society towards better equality for all and less abuse and violence until the members in society will no longer tolerate any inequality or violence.