Addressing gender-based violence through working with Faith leaders: Evidence of change

Stream: Rethinking Prevention: Evidence and Practice
Date: Thursday, 12 February 2015
Time: 11.00 am – 12.45 pm

Abstract

Faith leaders are amongst the most influential members in any given community. World Vision has been working with community partners such as faith based organizations in our development work. However inasmuch as faith leaders can be agents of social change, they can also be detrimental to healthy gender relations through their interpretation and the resulting application of religious texts. In some instances religious text has been used to validate cultural practices that support gender inequality. This prompted World Vision to implement a specific approach called Channels of Hope for Gender, that aims to engage faith leaders to develop their own healthy faith perspective on gender and are able to frame their own faith-based response to issues such as gender-based violence. By facilitating a process of increasing awareness, changing attitude and behaviour, the CoHG also aim to get faith, community and young leaders to become role models and motivate the community to value women, men, boys and girls and promote healthy gender relationships in community. World Vision has implemented this approach in 4 countries in Africa and in Solomon Islands. Evaluation of these projects are being undertaken to assess the effectiveness, relevance and impact of the project and Channels of Hope approach in reducing gender-based violence in project communities.

Author

Roscel Diego (Presenter), World Vision Australia
I am World Vision Australia's Gender Advisor. I have worked with government organizations and INGOs in mainstreaming gender in their work for 17 years. My work has focused around a) building capacity of organizations in gender-responsive programming and working with organizations to improving organization culture, b) providing technical assistance in projects addressing specific gender issues (FGM, GBV, early marriage), in integrating gender in sectoral projects – WASH, child protection, economic development, education, HIV and AIDS, climate change. I have a Masteral Degree in Public Administration (University of the Philippines) and continuing MA in Development Studies (University of Melbourne)