On 17th February 2023, with Support from Montica, medica Liberia launched a project titled ‘Empowering Teachers, Students and Parents to Take Action against School Related Gender-Based Violence in South-East Liberia’, a project that focuses on responding to School Related Gender Based Violence (SRGBV) and improving the safety of the school environment through building capacities of school actors to address SRGBV; developing SRGBV prevention and response mechanism in schools; and national level advocacy for strengthening policies on the elimination of SRGBV.
During the launch of the Project which was held at the Ministry of Education, medica Liberia Country Director, Atty Yah V Parwon presented the project to the Ministry of Education and other key stakeholders. She stated that the project builds on medica Liberia’s recent project funded by Germany
Federal Ministry for Economic Cooperation and Development which developed guidelines for the prevention and response of Sexual Exploitation and Abuse in medica Liberia intervention schools.
She hopes that by the end of this new project the guidelines will be adopted at the national level by the Ministry of Education.
Speaking further, the Director expects that schools in Sinoe will take action to create safe school environment by establishing SRGBV protection mechanisms in schools as a result of the project.
Mrs. Juanita Ramirez, representing the donor organization, served as the Chief Launcher for the event.
Mrs. Ramirez, thanked medica Liberia for the organization’s contribution towards improving the safety of the school environment, and pledged her commitment to supporting the success of the project. Madam Ramirez was instrumental in linking medica Liberia with the USA based Philanthropist Erika, L Binger who secured funding for the project. She is proud to see the project kicked off and set for action. She listed corporal punishment, sex for grades amongst others offenses, as some of the major forms of school related violence that must be addressed to ensure safety and wellbeing of students.
For his part, Asst. Min. Tarnue Mawolo Bogolee, (MOE) for (Student Personal Services) welcomed the project and pledged the ministry of Education full commitment and support to the implementation of the project. Among serveral commitments, Min. Bogolee pointed out that the Education reform Act of 2011 criminalizes Sexual offense in section 7.31 , therefore, the ministry sees the project as a great opportunity to collaborate and enforce the sexual offenses act .
medica Liberia, formerly medica Mondiale Liberia, is a non-governmental women’s rights organization working in Liberia.
The organization works with survivors of Gender-Based violence and provides a holistic stress and trauma-sensitive approach that incorporates health, legal, and psychosocial approaches based on feminist principles.
By: Aaron Ireland