The 16 Days of Activism against Gender-Based Violence is an international campaign which takes place each year and runs from 25 November (International Day for the Elimination of Violence against Women) to 10 December (Human Rights Day), also encompassing other important key dates like World AIDS Day.
On 28th November HIJRA in partnership with other partners in Oruchinga took part in the launch of the 16 days of activism under the theme; ‘’From peace in the home to peace in the world: Make education safe for all’’.
The launch of the 16 days was well attended by both adults and school children at the community center. Several activities were organised for the launch of the Campaign which which included; a band procession from the Base camp to Busheka Village, drama presentations from the school in the host community and the deaf unit at Kajaho P/S and the Burundian youth group with signing of the commitment cloth to take children to school and facilitating their education.
“The band procession match from base camp to Busheka Village.”
Three schools of Kajaho, Kayenje and Rwamurunga primary were reached and the pupils were cultured about SGBV and the importance of education. 700 pupils from P.4, 5, 6 participated and committed to stay in school, report all cases of violence; SGBV, sexual exploitation, child abuse to help themselves and sensitize their fellow pupils in the community; in and out of school with messages of SGBV to prevent it.
The aim of these activities was to mobilize people and create a spirit of togetherness between the host community and refugees. The deaf unit made parents and community aware that education and protection was for all children whether able or disabled. In addition the Burundian youth reached out to their fellow natives who do not educate their children to invest in education because in Oruchinga the Burundian and Congolese communities have registered the highest cases of school dropout.
“Some of the awareness sessions carried out at the Primary Schools in Kajaho, Kayenje and Rwamurunga”
The male action groups also staged a play that intrigued the community since men were the major perpetrators of violence in the community. This led to question and answer sessions that helped the partners to establish a level of understanding and also helped clarify the unexplained areas the community had not grasped.
The crowning was held on 9th December 2016 at Kajaho market. The activity celebrated World AIDS day, World Disability day and the entire 16 days of activism campaign. About 600 people were able to attend the crowning ceremony that attracted both the refugees and the host community which in a way was facilitating peaceful coexistence between the two communities. The occasion was used as a platform to raise awareness on SGBV and its connection to HIV/AIDS, Education and peaceful coexistence between the refugees and the host community.