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Western Rural District Teachers benefits from Caritas Freetown SGBV training

By Mohamed Konneh

Idris Mansaray making statement Idris Mansaray making statement

Caritas Freetown with support from Manos Unidas on Thursday 12th November 2020 holds Sexual Gender based Violence training for school teachers in the Western Area Rural District. The training was held at the Twin Hall in Hastings Village outside the capital Freetown.

Giving the overview of the project, Caritas Freetown Project Manager, Idris Gibson Mansaray explains the importance of the project while highlighting the project activities including the launch of the project which was done earlier this year, community engagement and capacity building.

He said the project also established and train advocacy forum members, young ambassador for change, raise awareness and promote safeguarding, recruit influential models and ambassadors of change and provide support to victims to access justice.

He said teachers are very important in the lives of pupils especially the girl child.

“We want to bring in strategies to address sexual gender based violence especially in schools and communities. This is something we are in together and what can do together in addressing this aspect that eating our society. You teachers are very important in this direction and the need for this training.

Mr. Mansaray said teachers are agent of change and when it comes to the school environment we all must make sure that it is safe for the kids.

“Globally, over two million children suffer from sexual Gender based violence and this is alarming. We need to create safe learning environment for the kids and this can only happens if we all do our part, he said.”

If we are unable to reduce sexual gender based violence in our communities and by extension our country it will be difficult to achieve the goal on SGBV in the Sustainable Development goals.

Mr. Mansaray said the project targets the school and the community because we all know the critical role of the community in protecting the child.

Since the project was launched in January this year we have done series of activities and we continue along this line.

The Project Manager said the school is one place were children are to be protected. There are report of schools not providing safe space for our children and the reason for this project. The teachers are very important in this direction because of the knowledge you impact in children as you play key role in lives of the kids.

“Teachers have lots of approaches to learning and this makes you important not only for this project but the safeguarding our kids, he said”.

Model Ambassador Doris Webber, in her statement thanked Caritas Freetown for the having such a project noting that sexual gender based violence is a challenge in the western rural district.

Madam Webber spoke on the 19 days of activism that raises awareness on sexual gender based violence.

“19 days of activism is a whole month of awareness raising on SGBV and amidst the 19 days the project is been implemented. The issue of SGBV is sad and that all ages of women continue to suffer from this aspect.

We have heard of young boys penetrating a fifty year old woman and that bringing teachers to discuss this issues is more relevant, she said”.

Madam Webber highlighted series of cases while raising concern over the snail pace of police investigation and the compromise of parents.

She said teachers have powers some of which they don’t realize. What you tell the children is what they take and sometimes they will argue even their parents. This makes you very important and the need to work together to safeguard our children.

I valued teachers so much she said.

On the area of experience sharing, teachers attending the training shares stories of abused either from the school or in the home. These abuses range from parents, elderly people and influential people in society.

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