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By Staff Reporter : PNG Today

Preventing gender-based violence in PNG through ‘SASA!’ training

Gender-based violence continues to be a major challenge in Papua New Guinea and elsewhere in the world.
A new type of training called ‘SASA!’ however is providing some hope for the future, and has already proven to be effective in preventing gender-based violence in parts of Africa and other countries around the world.
Through funding support from the Australian Government (DFAT), UN Women and Raising Voices, the training was delivered in Port Moresby from 5-9 September to Pacific-based organisation representatives from Papua New Guinea, Fiji, Kiribati, Solomon Islands and Vanuatu.
‘SASA!’ which is an African word for ‘now’ seeks urgent 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.
Australian High Commission Counsellor for Gender and Sports, Ms 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.”
Population Services International’s Shannon McVey said, “SASA! provides a vehicle for change that is community owned and driven.”
Participant Eriko Fufurefa from the Highlands Human Rights Defenders Network said that she learnt a lot of new ideas, techniques and approaches to use outreach prevention work in the communities.
The Australian Government’s (DFAT) Pacific Women Program is committed to supporting its partners to use innovative and evidence informed interventions such as the ‘SASA!’ model in primary prevention programs.
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 ‘SASA!’ strategies into their existing or new prevention programs.
The training is supported by the Pacific Women Shaping Pacific Development Program (http://pacificwomen.org/), an Australian Government initiative working to improve opportunities for the political, economic and social advancement of women in the 14 Pacific Island Forum countries and the UN Women Multi Country Office.
Caption: Participants in Port Moresby.

Posted by Staff Reporter : PNG Today on 1:45 AM. Filed under , , . You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0. Share this Article

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