Blogs by Electric Peacock Patrol
Thammy from Malaysia, Amany from Egypt, Visakha from Sri Lanka, Sarah from Ireland, Alice from USA, Nini from Madagascar, Sandra from Rwanda, Amy from London
Why ‘Stop the Violence’
Violence against girls and women is one of the most widespread human rights abuses taking place in the world today, with six in 10 girls and women around the world experiencing violence in their lifetime.
Violence against girls and women is not confined to a specific culture, race or religion, or to particular groups of girls and women within a society. The root cause of violence against girls and women lie in historically unequal power relations between men and women, and persistent discrimination against women and girls.
The violence against girls and women comes in many forms: domestic violence, early and forced marriage, sexual harassment, sexual assault, rape, incest, molestation and many more. These are wrong and must stop!
Why are we doing this? In the Stop the violence campaign, girls are the solution. Girls told us that this is a very important topic, and we know that we can definitely stop the violence through education. Because of the girls’ future, we must do it. WAGGGS is the biggest organization for girls in the world, with 10 million Girl Guides and Girl Scouts across the world: we can end the violence against girls!
Why Stop the Violence from the 5th World centre
At the 34th World Conference in Edinburgh in 2011, a motion was passed to create an experimental two-year pilot project that could potentially lead to the creation of a fifth world centre in the Africa region. The centre would be piloted as a mobile centre, working in existing training centres operated by Member Organizations in theAfrica region. By creating a mobile centre, with projects in different countries, guides from countries in theAfrica region will benefit from having a world centre in their region, without the inconvenience and barrier of expensive travel and potential problems with visas. Pilot projects have taken place inSouth Africa andGhana, one is currently taking place inRwanda and the next will be inKenya. The project is run under the leadership of Maire-Paule Rafenoariso.
The Involvement of the Rwanda Girl Guides in the Stop the Violence campaign
The 5th World Centre Project Training on gender-based violence was brought to Rwanda to host for a great reason. Rwanda’s 1994 Genocide resulted in widespread murder, torture and rape.
According to statatistcs 500,000 women and girls were sexually violated and a large number of women were murdered. Many children also died.
The Regional director for the Africa Region, Alphonsine Kabagodo, who is Rwandese, had this to say:
‘ I have watched the Rwanda Girl Guides evolving during the past decades,’
The Rwandans Guides were involved in the string surge of women who formed themselves into a coalition for action after the genocide. The women were determined never to be subjected to such violations ever again. With this impetus women’s organizations, especially the Girl Guides Association of Rwanda were empowered to ‘act’. The government of Rwanda was is fully supportive of this way forward.
The Rwanda Girl Guide Association works with girls as young as 5 to empower them, and encourage them to take a leadership role in their community from a young age. The Association forges partnerships with NGOS that have a strong community focus. These project partnerships expose girls to a deep level providing them with an understanding in community work.
As Rwanda has a very young population, the Association aims to double the number of members in the next decade, so that more girls and women will be empowered, and for the Stop the Violence campaign to reach all corners of Rwanda.
It was so inspiring to talk with a senior member of the Girl Guide Association, Isabella Nizeyimare. Ms Nizeyimere became very animated when she spoke about the extremely creative community protection mechanism that has been established in the villages and in institutions, such as hospitals and police. In the ‘Umudugudu’ 100 houses equal one cluster, 10 houses have a leader, whose duty is to protect the houses in his charge by mobilising the community so all the Girl Guides are familiar with community protection mechanism.
According to Ms. Nizeyimare with this kind of awareness and involvement in the community, the Association implements activities which while advocating on the issue, goes into service provision for violated women and girls.
The Rukira centre which is an initiative of Rwanda Girl Guides provides a package of services for these women. The package includes counselling, skill development and preparing women and girls for income generation. However, support is needed to strengthen and spread the services and hopefully this global event and training to Stop the Violence will showcase the work of the Girl Guides Association of Rwanda and bring the support of others in this area.
The Association is also engaged in a Training of trainers, an awareness raising for stop the Violence in 3 districts, in an effort to penetrate all communities with this knowledge.
It was a pleasure to talk with a 20 year old Sandra who is a Guide leader for over 100 girl guides in her school. She became a leader at the age of 14! Sandra is the epitome of this movement which grows girls for leadership role and this demonstrates the positive results of both genders working together. Sandra would like to see the end of gender-based violence, by permeating, the whoek country with awareness that is internalised. She would like to see all countries taking on this challenge.
Sandra’s aim is to identify girls who have been violated and those who are vulnerable and to work with them closely to build their capcity and to empower them.
The girl Guides association of Rwanda is no doubt and engine on the road to empowering girls and women.
Doverte Patrol Blog
Imagine a jewellery box with all its symmetric compartments in which
treasured belongings are securely and methodically kept. Imagine
opening it, anticipating bright jewels and cool metals.
Instead, imagine that those little compartments are infinite. And in
each one of those infinite compartment resides something menacing and
malodorous. The secret fear of individual women.
These are a collection of fears that we have gathered from a host of
women that loom over them daily, insidiously governing their actions
“Domestic Violence – the home should be the safest place, the place
where a girl can grow and feel confident. But sometimes this place is
violated by someone you love and someone you love is hurt. I
experienced this when my father hurt my mother. It has caused
long-lasting consequences for me and my little sister who, even though
she was not the one being directly effected by the physical abuse, has
since suffered from depression, that makes it difficult for her to
finish her education.”
“Violence and Conflict – The fear that we feel when we hear gun shots
and the exposure that we feel that at any point in time someone can
come in and take advantage of you, with force. Because you’re not
worth anything. You’re just a woman. Like a side dish, with fries.”