Annual Office for Foreigners reports say that in recent decades, it is mainly families with children that have sought international protection, primarily from the North Caucasus (mainly Chechnya) and Central Asia (for instance Tajikistan). The cultures of these foreigners are highly patriarchal. Researchers say that mental abuse may occur in 90% of North Caucasus families, and also physical violence in half of them. A qualitative study conducted by our team for the UNHCR in eight facilities for asylum seekers produced similar findings – the main conclusion was that abuse by husbands and family is common and normalized, and there is a complete lack of understanding of police procedures in this respect.
This project addresses the problem of widespread violence towards women in families seeking protection.
We will organize briefings in ten facilities and gather information on women’s needs. A group of 60 women in facilities and the vicinity will receive one-on-one (remote) coaching for two months. We will select ten female leaders and organize workshops (empowerment, individual standing in relationships with services, networking) and a one-week training camp at which they will gain the relevant legal knowledge on gender-based violence and prevention, and improve competencies (WenDo assertiveness and self-defence, self-care, relaxation, training techniques). They will prepare simple workshops and conduct them in their communities, assisted by a female trainer. We will conclude the project with a summarizing conference.
8-10 female refugee leaders will be selected and trained and given agency capacity and new instruments for dealing with their own trauma and supporting other women, and expressing their own views about their communities’ problems.
63 refugee women will participate.