Domestic Violence as a "You and Me" matter

Domestic Violence as a "You and Me" matter

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Namibian Voices fr Development is a welfare organization dedicated to promote the protection of human rights through civic education, using the Media as our main tool to disseminate information.

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Plot your innovation within the mosaic of solutions
Which of these barriers is the primary focus of your work?

Which of the principles is the primary focus of your work?

If you believe some other barrier or principle should be included in the mosaic, please describe it and how it would affect the positioning of your initiative in the mosaic:

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Describe your program or new idea in one sentence.

Namibian Voices fr Development is a welfare organization dedicated to promote the protection of human rights through civic education, using the Media as our main tool to disseminate information.

What makes your initiative uniquely positioned to create change in your community?

The title of the Project is known as: "You and Me" "You and Me" is the founding project of Namibian Voices for Development. The innovation can be summarized as awareness Raising on Gender Based violence it roots and consequences, through different radio language services and television programs and talks shows. Handing over of petitions to Government on combating of gender based violence. Marches to demonstrate our concerns about the high rates of gender based violence, calling on Government to implement stricter sentences. Using the electronic and print media, to raise awareness, disseminate information and educate people on their human rights.

I choose to work with the media as an attempt to forge practical links between those affected by gender violence, activists and the media, as part of the broader campaign to “make every voice count.” Working with the media is a unique opportunity to raise public awareness on the most glaring reflections of gender inequalities in Namibia and the region: gender violence and HIV/AIDS and to enlist the support of the media is challenging these two scourges. Media houses in Namibia were engaged to persuade them to devote time, spac and resources to raise public awareness and educate the public at large on issues of Gender Based Violence and HIV/AIDS. All the media work was conducted without any finances, it was accomplished through personal passion and commitment on a voluntarily basis.

Describe how you organize and carry out your work?

Working with the print and electronic media, using the media is a unique opportunity to raise public awareness on the most glaring reflections of gender inequalities in Namibia. Media houses in Namibia were engaged to persuade them to devote time, space and resources to raise public awareness and educate the public at large on issues of Gender Based Violence and HIV/AIDS. Through using four different indigenous radio language services and the national television services we reached our target population. Callers and viewers have the opportunity to either call into the radio services by life telephone calls, sending faxes, sending emails or calling at my cell phone and ask for clarification, advice and seeking life counseling or linking them with necessary resources. Listeners, viewers and clients call in on the Life Chat show radio or talk of the nation program whereby they measure the impact of the radio and television programs or they send faxes or emails or mobile text messages. The impact of the programs was also evaluated, by nominating and selecting by the general public whereby the winner who really combats gender based through the media was awarded with a trophy of whom I got it.

What is your plan to scale and expand your innovation into your community and beyond?

Namibian Voices for Development aims to engage in the presentation of educational radio and television programs, information dissemination through workshops, writing up of “I-Stories” on gender based violence, HIV/AIDS and children’s rights as well as Activism campaigns on the former United Nations Secretary General’s Report on Violence against Women. Focusing on the launching of and awareness raising on the In-Depth Study on all forms of Violence against women as spelled out in the Report of the United Nations Secretary-General on all social, health and educational human rights violations.

We would like to disseminate information, raise awareness, conduct public education and advocacy on the full implementation of the human rights of women as guaranteed in CEDAW, its Optional Protocol, the Universal Declaration on Human Rights, Beijing Platform for Action, the African Union Protocol on the Rights of Women in Africa, SADC-Declaration on Gender and Development, the Namibian Constitution and all Namibian Legislation. It will include expanding public understanding about women's human right issues, such as Domestic Violence, Rape, HIV/AIDS, Poverty, Unemployment, Domestic violence, Alcohol and Drug abuse, Property Grabbing, Health and Reproductive Rights, lack of Education, Children's Rights, its causes and consequences.

What other resources, institutional, or policy needs would be necessary to help sustain and scale up your idea?

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Describe your impact in one sentence, commenting on both the individual and community levels.

Namibian Voices for Development started its media work in Combating Gender Based Violence in February 2006 and during its first year of existence it was awarded the Namibian National Media Award for Combating Gender Based Violence on 07 December 2006.

What impact has your work achieved to date?

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Number of individuals served

According to the statistics of how many people in Namibia have access to radio and television services, it is estimated that our radio and television programs, have reached between 70-80 % of the Namibian population of 1.8 million people.

Community impact

The long-term goal of the Organization is to facilitate a process of self-empowerment and develop a sense of entitlement where people will be able to assert and claim their rights. Beneficiaries are isolated and marginalized people living in rural areas and urban informal settlements of Namibia with special focus on women and children. Beyond these, we target the broader public with information through national media presentations.

Society at large

Our vision is information for development by rendering services directed at the elimination of human rights violations throughout Namibia. Our mission is to foster healthy lifestyles, create healthy and safe environments where people live, learn and work.

What measure do you use to gauge your impact and why?

- Increased awareness and understanding of Human Rights especially on violence against women among rural and marginalized people in the thirteen regions of Namibia
- Increased capacity to lobby and advocate for human rights and to hold government accountable.
- Increased capacity of Namibian Voices for Development to undertake successful workshops and radio and television programs on different Human Rights issues in different towns and villages across the country;
- Increased collaboration and partnerships between Council of Churches in Namibia {CCN}, the Ministry of Gender Equality and Child Welfare, NBC-National Television and Radio Services and NGOs in Namibia working on human rights development issues.
- Identified ways and means to ensure more sustained and effective implementation of State obligations to address all forms of violence against women
- We have different laws and draft Bills and Policies in place due to advocacy and lobbying work done especially when it comes to the protection and promotion of women and children’s rights. We have the Domestic Violence Act and its Protection Order in place, the Rape Act, the Children’s Status Act, The Child Maintenance Act, Affirmative Action Act, the Amended Labour Act, the Married Person’s Equality Act in place. An increase in Women’s Equal Political Participation.

How is your initiative currently being financed and how would you finance further expansion and/or replication?

Currently there is no finance that sponsors the initiative. All the media work conducted since 23 June 2005, was conducted due to passion, voluntarism, personal and financial commitment from the pocket of the Founder of Namibian Voices, Mrs. Rachel Freeman.

As earlier stated, Namibian Voices for Development is a registered Welfare Organization in terms of Section 19 of the National Welfare Act, Act 12 of 1979, Registration number, WO 256. Namibian Voices for Development is a non-profit organization dedicated to promote the protection of human rights through civic education, using the Media as our main tool to disseminate information. It is not a membership organization and therefore no contributions from the beneficiaries.

As earlier said, the Organization operates without any budget, since its inception in June 2005. We do not have any financial schemes or arrangements for low-income and marginalized populations, however if we could be assisted with finance to do so, we would really appreciate it, because we also wish to empower people financially and not only with knowledge.

Provide information on your current finances and organization:

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Who are your potential partners and allies?

Ministry of Gender Equality and Child Welfare
2. Parliamentarians
3. Council of Churches in Namibia
4. Namibian National Radio and Television Services
5. Gender and Media Southern Africa Namibia
6. Women Solidarity
7. Ombudsman’s Office
8. Ministry of Works
9. The National Art Gallery
10. Johanniter Hilfswerk
11. Namibian Girl Child Organization
12. White Ribbon Campaign
13. Namibian Women’s Association
15. UNDP
16. Legal Assistance Center

The aforementioned mostly contribute in supporting the programs by participating in events organized and providing media coverage. They also assist the Organization whenever legal advice is needed in human rights violation cases. Also sometimes assist in trainings and availing latest information on human rights issues. Drafting, finalization and adoption, passing of human rights legislation. Partake in Advocacy and Lobbying campaigns. Help in the organization and logistics of handing over petition and marches/demonstrations.

Who are your potential investors?

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The Story
What is the origin of this innovation? Tell us your story.

I am Rachel Freeman, Social Worker by Profession and Founder of a registered Welfare Organization, known as Namibian Voices for Development the Namibian radio voice and television face combating gender based violence, as an issue of public concern and no longer a private matter but one that involves the society as a whole and therefore calls for a holistic approach promoting preventive solutions, that is why I decided to work in this field of raising awareness on combating. When I looked at the picture of gender based violence in Namibia, as an active human rights defender and Gender Activist, I developed a passion to actively and effectively start tackling the issue through using the media as the main tool in disseminating information , because I believe in information for development, whereby when you share knowledge with people it is personal empowerment.

Please provide a personal bio. Note this may be used in Changemakers marketing material.

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