Every exit is an entry somewhere else.Tom Stoppard
Outreach for Women and Girls in Post-Quake Nepal
While the state of emergency in Nepal has ended, things are hardly back to “normal”. Deeply rooted patriarchal views that see women and girls as lesser beings have resulted in ongoing violence and oppression, making them exceptionally vulnerable to crimes like child marriage, rape, and sex trafficking. This also significantly increases rates of early pregnancies, STIs, and reproductive health complications. Shortages of water and shelter further increase female vulnerability to trafficking.
The Outreach program targets gender-based violence (GBV) and gender disparity by providing daily education and access to GBV services for vulnerable women and girls. This is a safe space where they can go to report incidences of violence, seek services, attend educational workshops, obtain vital identification, and feel supported. It also refers females of all ages to health, legal, and other services available to them. Once a month, men and boys are also included in awareness sessions.
In providing ongoing education and information, girls and women will have increased awareness of their rights and the services available to them. With this knowledge, they become empowered, more likely to report incidences of violence and reclaim ownership of their lives. Furthermore, when entire communities learn of both the prevalence of gender disparity and its repercussions for EVERYONE, the cycle of violence and inequality can be broken. Education is absolutely critical for achieving this.