Group trains boys on gender-based violence
The Working Group of Eight (WG8), a coalition of non-governmental organisations working on programmes aimed at curbing gender-based violence held a sensitisation workshop for secondary school boys in Lagos recently. The coalition is made up of Project Alert on Violence Against Women, Alliance for Africa, Baobab for Women’s Rights, Women’s Consortium of Nigeria, Partnership for Justice, Legal Defence and Assistance Project and West African Network for Peace-building and Women’s Rights and Health Project.
The aim of the workshop was to give the students understanding on the concept of gender, expose them to the treatment women go through in this society, implications of gender-based violence, partner with them on the different strategies for curbing violence, ensure they do not grow up to perpetrate violence against women and unlearn some of the things they learnt wrongly.
The boys drawn from five schools – Babs Fafunwa Millennium Senior Secondary School, Ojodu; Bosol Godswill College, Iyana Ipaja; Doland International Secondary School, Akute; Matol High School Oshodi, and Damiland High School Iju were evaluated on their understanding of gender-based violence. They also related real life stories of cases of violence perpetrated on women and girls known to them in their communities.
Programme Officer, Justice for All, Chibogu Obinwa, taking them through the topic, “Understanding Gender and Violence Against Women,” highlighted that sex is a fact of human biology, implying that one is born male or female, and comes with associated natural roles.
Obinwa taught them various forms of violence against women such as rape, wife battering, verbal abuse, and in addition, female genital mutilation, sexual slavery, forced prostitution, acid bath and obnoxious widowhood practices.
Patrick Momah of Millennium Senior Secondary School, Ojodu shared his experience of the programme thus: “It is very educative. I learnt many things I didn’t know before about violence against women, and things people don’t know are wrong. I also got inspiration to withstand the temptation of violating women’s right, and the punishment for violators. I am going to educate the rough guys in school, and tell them that if people are doing it to their younger ones, how will they feel?”