By Alaskai Moore Johnson
The Women NGO Secretariat of Liberia (WONGOSOL) has commissioned a study on violence against women in three of Liberia’s 15 counties.
A statement released by the women’s group said that the study is aimed at establishing available knowledge, perception, attitudes and causes of violence against women and girls in project communities.
According to them, the study, which is also geared towards tracking the level and consequence of violence perpetrated against women and girls, was conducted in Grand Gedeh, Sinoe and Montserrado counties.
They told this newspaper their research was to provide reliable quantitative and qualitative pieces of information that will enable WONGOSOL and her partners (IBIS – Liberia) to develop strategies and interventions aimed at fighting violence against women and girls.
“Upon validation, this is going to set the basis for the ‘Violence Against Women and Girls Project’ that WONGOSOL will embark upon,” said Ms Eliza Dahn of WONGOSOL.
She said that it will also provide a point of reference for comparison and understanding changes within the communities among target groups over a period of time.
The study facilitated the use of evidence-based information for advocacy and to enhance understanding by stakeholders of the consequences of violence against women and girls.
The Women NGO Secretariat hired 30 data collectors and divided them equally among the three counties where they conducted the research.
The data collectors, among other things, were told to measure the frequency of incidences of violence experienced by women and girls and analyze the communities’ perceptions on the causes and consequences of violence.
Meanwhile, as part of the fight for women’s rights, WONGOSOL, with funding from IBIS-Liberia, is currently working through the Southeastern Women’s Development Association (SEWODA) to implement a project titled: ACCESS TO JUSTICE HUMAN RIGHTS AND ENDING
DISCRIMINATION AGAINST WOMEN AND GIRLS IN LIBERIA. The project is slated for the southeast, specifically Grand Gedeh and Sinoe counties. WONGOSOL/SEWODA conducted a cross-generational dialogue focusing on violence against women in Sinoe County, while at the same time created awareness on the UN Security Council Resolution 1325/Liberian National Action Plan and the Convention Ending Discrimination against Women (CEDAW).
The dialogue brought together 25 participants including magistrates, representatives from the Liberian National Police, health workers, traditional leaders, women’s community-based organizations (CBOs), including rural women structures and young women from the community. Two other dialogues are expected to kick off soon in Grand Gedeh and Montserrado counties.