A Training Manual on Violence against Women

This 145-page manual, is intended for individuals and organisations to ensure a comprehensive understanding of Violence against Women for effective response to victims of violence. It was published in April 2011 and authored by seasoned Women’s Rights Advocates who have served as Resource Persons in training our partners and other civil society groups since 2000.  They include Kathy Cusack, Dr Araba Sefa-Dede, Dr Angela Ofori-Atta  and Dorcas Coker-Appiah among others.

The manual is in seven sections with each section dealing with one topic as follows:

Section 1: Defining Violence; this section builds on participant’s understanding of what violence is and introduces some international definitions of violence.  It also explores why it is important to have a universal definition of violence.

Section 2: Explaining Violence against Women; this section deals with the causes of violence and introduces the ideology of patriarchy and power and control as tools of women’s subordination.  It further explores some of the myths surrounding violence and social influences supporting violence.  This session is very important as it deals with the social underpinnings of violence and gets participants to start interrogating their own understanding of gender roles and how a departure from these roles leads to violence.

Section 3: Physical and psychological Violence; Section three explains in detail, physical and psychological violence and what constitutes each one.

Section 4: Sexual Violence; this section sets out to identify all the different elements of sexual violence, increase knowledge on the facts of the issue and to debunk myths surrounding sexual violence.

Section 5: Impacts of Violence; the section examines in detail the impact of violence, not only on the woman but also on children of the family.  The section also explores the link between wife assault and child abuse.

Section 6: Responding to Violence; the key objective of this section is to improve participants’ knowledge on how best to respond o victims of violence when they report.  The section deals with issues to be aware of at a personal level when responding as well as professional issues in assessment of victims.

Section 7: Resource and Referral Auditing: this final section deals with helping participants develop guidelines for carrying out resource and referral audits.  This section is only suitable for those participants who intend to set up community-based programmes to respond to violence.

Each section stands on its own and at the same time leads into the next section.  For participants to get a clear understanding  of violence against women, it is recommended that they are taken through sections 1 to 6 and undertake as many of the recommended exercises as possible.

Copies are currently available in our offices.

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