Finding Space To Talk

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Challenge: Finding private, uninterrupted space to talk to girls about GBV is difficult

Solution: If your programme does not have a room or facility that provides adequate privacy for discussing sensitive issues with girls, solicit help from community partners. Several programme director’s report having space donated by local schools, community centres, churches (accepting of the content of GBV discussions) or medical service buildings. If inside space is not an option, try finding a low-traffic space outdoors, such as the corner of an unused field or unoccupied open lot. To protect girls’ confidentiality and ensure optimal comfort, it is important to make sure whatever space you choose is free from uninvited outsiders of any sort.

In Uganda, schools dedictate at least one hour every afternoon to extracurricular activities which can range from sports, arts or agriculture. The 'Sure Start' project run by MIFUMI used this avenue to get a safe space for the programme. Working in a school environment allowed MIFUMI to train the girls in a familiar setting. In addition, the schools offered free space for the club activities during the extracurricular hour. When a problem arose involving the boys who were trying to disrupt the girls practice session, 'Sure Start' decided to have a mixed-gender class with the view that the boys who did well in gender would then be trained karate by the girls. This has instilled increased discipline in the boys.