Preventing violence against women in Fiji through Faith (PVAWFF) project

House of Sarah is continuing its journey of promoting the prevention of violence against women. Moving into new communities of Rokara in Nasinu, Kinoya Koro and Toga Naqavoka in Rewa is exciting. The three communities are interdenominational and first phase of the training is targeting Community leaders who hold leadership roles in their respective communities. Faith is the cornerstone of our work and we are able to advocate, create awareness and eventually change attitudes and mindsets to prevent violence against women”. After the initial 2 day Leaders’ seminar, the Team started with the 4 day Start Phase training.
Rokara Settlement – Community Workshop 19/3; 26 – 28/3/24
Due to inclement weather, the workshop had to be rescheduled after the first day. Those who attended the training learnt more about the SASA! Faith approach to prevent violence against women. With the phased approach, the first training focused on the Start Phase where participants gained insights into the power dynamics within relationships. The sessions allowed participants to recognise that we all have power within and were also introduced to the various types of violence and their impacts amongst others on women, men, children, family etc.
Kinoya Koro, 15 – 18/4/24
The 4-day training provided an opportunity for participants to recognise the different types of power and how we use our power. Acknowledging that we all have power within us and using our power over someone else borders on abuse. Participants also learnt about v the different types of violence and how its impacts our community. They (participants) now realised that keeping silent about domestic violence helps perpetuate this problem. Preventing violence against women is our collective responsibility.
Navatuyaba, Toga Naqavoka 10 -12/4/24
Leaders play a vital role in the development of a community, either by adding value or by hindering progress. Recently, community leaders from Navatuyaba and Vunisei villages attended the SASA! Faith Leaders’ Seminar and have gained knowledge and confidence to effectively support the START Phase. They now understand that violence against women can be prevented through changed attitudes and behavior, and they are committed to their collective responsibilities. Furthermore, they have enhanced their understanding of the links between power, violence against women, and HIV & AIDS.
The second round of SASA! Start Phase Community Leaders workshop was held in Vunisei on 14th to the 15th of May. 30 Leaders, young and old converged in the Vunisei Village Hall and were challenged after the 2-day training to act on what they have learned.
All our training sessions begin with the Word of God as our source of enlightenment and strength to help participants to self-reflect before they:
– gain knowledge and confidence to effectively support the START Phase
– have a better understanding that violence against women can be prevented through changed attitude and behavior
– to recognize that preventing violence against women and children is our collective responsibility and to
– better understand the connections between power, violence against women and HIV & AIDS
We will be undertaking to train our new Community Activists from the three new communities. They are made up of vibrant, young and eager to serve volunteers that want to make impacts in the society that change starts with them.
HoS will be engaged for about 3 years in these three communities for the implementation of the adapted SASA!Faith, a community mobilisation programme.
HoS is partnering with UNWomenn Fiji Multi-Country Office and Bread for the World for the next 3 years.