STOP IT-Sierra Leone urges Men to Keep the Promise and Stop the Abuse against females
Thousands of women and girls are becoming abused every year in Sierra Leone and a few only have the courage to reporting the abuses and their abusers – making it difficult for the authorities to track the abuses and identify their perpetrators.
FREETOWN, 8 March 2017—On International Women’s Day, STOP IT-Sierra Leone calls for urgent need to scale up gender rights abuses against women and girls in Sierra Leone.
Women and girls are key in the development of Sierra Leone and this demands right to protect them by men taking the lead to stand up for them to protect their rights. This movement needs to establish certain conditions for men to uphold and allow children to grow while women thrive in societies and flourish in economic development.
STOP IT-Sierra Leone believes that lack of access to right to education of women and children on rights awareness and abuse prevention hinders all efforts towards liberation and this undermines their whole human growth and development.
Global statistics state that in only 30% of countries worldwide do equal numbers of girls and boys attend secondary school and in western and central Africa only a third of young women between the ages of 15 and 24 report having the final say in their own health care. In Botswana, every additional year of school has been shown to reduce the risk of HIV infection by 11.6% among girls, while in Sierra Leone pregnant girls are not allowed to go to school.
STOP IT-Sierra Leone views that the introduction of rights clubs in primary schools and community engagement and sensitization of women will change the cultural, behavioural and biological factors that are negatively affecting gender rights growth in our country.
To reach our target goals this year, STOP IT-Sierra Leone is partnering with 7 primary schools to introduce STOP IT-Children’s Club to teach children about rights awareness and abuse prevention; Academic Rights Scholarship Award (ARSA) to award and reward outstanding pupils who excel in academic pursuit and promoting child rights on campuses, homes and communities; and the Community Shield, to engage pupils in sports.
These amongst other initiatives will lead to a healthy environment where rights are observed and abuses shunned. We urge men to join women and girls on this day to uphold these beliefs.
STOP IT-Sierra Leone is working with seven schools as partners, including donors, civil society, and the private sector, to ensure that women and children in Sierra Leone are better served and empowered to champion rights and protect themselves against abuses.
John Koroma, Founder/Executive Director, STOP IT-Sierra Leone
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