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Mentors Equipped to Counter Violence against Women and Girls

“Rapariga Biz”, a progamme led by the Mozambican Government and supported by several United Nations agencies, including UNFPA, trains secondary school girls to serve as mentors to their peers and to become change agents in their communities.  Taking advantage of this pool of talented young people, on 26-27 October UNFPA sponsored a training in Nampula city for 440 of these mentors to learn how to counter violence against women and girls.

Mentors receiving training  ©UNFPA-Mozambqiue

The training was part of the worldwide Spotlight Initiative, a programme supported by the United Nations and the European Union that focuses on eliminating all forms of violence against women and girls. Through the training, the young mentors deepened their understanding of the underlying drivers and forms of gender-based violence.  The interactive and lively sessions focused especially on equipping the girls with the knowledge and skills to challenge social norms and practices that harm women and girls and on how to assist and empower survivors of violence. Mentors also learned about the concept of inclusion and how such factors as disabilities can make people more vulnerable.

Mentors receiving training  ©UNFPA-Mozambqiue

I learned during this training that we all have the same rights, no matter the gender, economic status, or disability. We should stop believing in community myths that undermine our rights and our position in the community. These myths encourage violent behaviors from men to girls and women. I will make sure to discuss these important elements during my mentor sessions,” reported Rosimina Victor, a 19-year-old who started her mentorship a year ago.

In the coming days, more than additional 600 mentors will receive training on these issues in the districts of Mogovolas, Moma and Angoche.

Stay tuned!

Mentors receiving training  ©UNFPA-Mozambqiue