Being a survivor of abuse myself I want to be a part of getting the story out, if a child tells you they are being abused please believe the child. No one believed my story in my family because back then you didn't talk about what went on in the house. I was abused sexually, mentally, and physically and as an adult it still affects the way I interact with others. Trust level very low, and everyone around me will abuse a child and get away with it. What I want to do is do the girls hair, (to make them feel beautiful) spend a day with a child just having fun so they don't have to even think about the hard life adults put on them. I really want to be a part of healing out children of the future.
ANPPCAN’s Profile 2002 – 2012
ANPPCAN is a national Ngo registered with the Government of Liberia. It has a women program which runs innovative programs pressing for positive change in promoting the rights of minorities especially girls and women. Since coming into being, ANPPCAN Women Program has remained a steady voice in the bastion of women rights promotion, and firmly visible in filling the gaps by turning challenges into opportunities in championing their wishes and aspirations.
Between 2004 – 2005, ANPPCAN provided training for police recruits from the first 15 classes of the new Liberian Police on issues surrounding child and women protection and prevention of sexual violence with support from UNICEF. With support from UNIFEM, in 2006, ANPPCAN conducted training for police officers and community leaders on the Rape and Inheritance Laws in 18 communities in Montserrado and Margibi Counties and further sensitized on protecting women and girls against SGBV. From 2007 – 2008, in n addressing sexual exploitation and abuse in schools, ANPPCAN provided sensitization training for students, teachers, children’s clubs and community members in preventing Sexual Exploitation and Abuse at the school and community levels in Montserrado County. In tackling sexual violence outside Monrovia, ANPPCAN carried out sensitization aimed at strengthening the capacity of women and children in protecting themselves against sexual violence in rural Montserrado and Margibi Counties with support from the Virginia Gildersleeve International Fund Inc. (VGIF). Major activities of the project included community sensitization, dialogue, training, monitoring, reporting and documentation.
In 2007, ANPPCAN with support from the United States Embassy Ambassador’s Fund implemented a Farming Project on Cassava production for single mothers in rural Montserrado.
From 2008 – 2009, with support from UNIFEM, ANPPCAN initiated the Women Friendly Policing Program in Grand Gedeh and Nimba Counties. The followings were achieved as the result of the intervention.
• Mobilized and sensitized internal security officers on the concept of women friendly policing in Grand Gedeh and Nimba Counties.
• Facilitated monthly dialogue between internal security and communities in identifying perceptions and mooting up strategies in altering the perceptions into women friendly practices.
• Developed training module and conducted training for internal security on women friendly policing to enable internal security to be effective in protecting women against SGBV.
• Developed training module and conducted training for community members on protecting women against SGBV. Women, traditional, religious and community leaders were targeted.
• Developed and distributed IEC materials with simple and easy to read messages in encouraging women to report SGBV cases to the internal security and as the same encouraging internal security to adhere to professional ethics in protecting women against SGBV. Messages were carefully tailored to enhance knowledge attitudes and practices on preventing SGBV.
• Developed Resource Handbook for internal security officers with basic tips on enhancing their work on women friendly policing.
• Increased SGBV reporting as the result of sensitization of communities and training of internal security officers.
• Enhanced skills and capacity of internal security officers in Grand Gedeh and Nimba in women friendly policing and protecting women against SGBV. This has now made internal security especially police paying special attention to women cases, unlike prior to our intervention.
• Increased women participation in community policing and providing them opportunity to voice their views on violence against them.
• Successfully carried out radio and newspaper campaign on women friendly practices targeting various audiences in protecting women against violence. This was done through jingles, radio talk shows and interviews.
• Heightened advocacy against stereotype and perception exacerbating SGBV.
• Involvement of traditional, religious and community leaders in women friendly policing and SGBV Prevention in Nimba and Grand Gedeh Counties.
• Increased men’s awareness and involvement on SGBV prevention and response and women friendly policing in Nimba and Grand Gedeh Counties.
• Facilitated women and girls to have access to police in protecting them against SGBV.
• Rescued at least a woman along with her baby that was trafficked to Loquatuo. Reunited her with biological parents in Monrovia. Trafficked lady was serving as a sex worker at this bordering town.
• Communities protecting women and girls against violations and respect for their rights
• Women and girls able to identify, report and monitor SGBV issues and protecting themselves against HIV/AIDS
• Women claiming their rights as it relates to SGBV
• Communities and police structures strengthened in protecting women against SGBV
• Responses are available to survivors
• 200 police, custom and immigration, correctional officers trained in women friendly policing
• Police stations in project’s communities capacitated in women friendly policing through the provision of 10 motor bikes and stationeries to the women and child protection units in 10 project’s communities in the 2 counties
• Resource Handbook on Women Friendly Police produced
• Practices and attitudes of police, custom and immigration officers, and stations in creating women friendly policing
• Communities working with Ministry of Gender and Development County Coordinators, and Local Government structures on SGBV issues
• 200 women and girls are mentored in identifying, reporting SEA
From 2010 – 2011, with the support of UN Women continued the Women Friendly Policing Project in Grand Cape Mount and Gbarpolu (Yomo Town, Gokallah Town, Gbangay and Nyemah Town). The followings were achieved as the result of the intervention.
o 10 communities in Grand Cape Mount and Gbarpolu were mobilized and sensitized against Gender Based Violence through role plays, dramas and cultural performances
o Initiated and increased community dialogue forum between internal security and communities in 8 communities in discussing GBV and finding means of prevention and response
o Capacity of 68 internal security officers were enhanced on GBV and the concept of women friendly policing to enable them to protect more women and girls against SGBV
o Mobilized and enhanced the capacity of 282 peer educators; 191 women and 91 men influencing protection against SGBV in 10 communities in Grand Cape Mount and Gbarpolu Counties
o Conducted baseline study to establish ongoing initiatives in the GBV sector in project’s communities
o Mentored women flag bearers in being proactive in taking up their own initiatives through the establishment of women groups against GBV
o Eased the communication barrier between police and community by providing cell phones to police units, women and community leaders in following up cases
o Information on the available referral pathway disseminated in communities where it is existing and recommendations advanced in areas where it is not in existence
ANPPCAN is presently implementing the Girl Power Program in Liberia. The program provides equal opportunities and rights for girls and young women in Grand Cape Mount and Montserrado County with the support of the Dutch Foreign Ministry. Through the intervention, 400 girls and young women are being protected against violence, provided life skills and leadership training to participate in decision making processes. The project also 200 targets traditional leaders as partners in challenging harmful practices which violate the rights of girls and young women. 300 school teachers are provided gender sensitive skills in attracting more girls to school.
At the moment, with the support of UN Women, ANPPCAN is conducting the Economic Empowerment Program in Bowein Community, Bomi County. Through the program, the followings are being achieved.
• 40 vulnerable women access capital to expand their businesses and increase their financial independence;
• 40 vulnerable women gain basic literacy skills;
• 40 vulnerable women are aware of appropriate response to SGBV and learn techniques for preventing SGBV in their communities;
• Rural Women in Bomi County have access to a women’s center for future literacy and economic empowerment programs;
• Community members have increased awareness on the prevention and response to SGBV through community events and local media;
• 20 male and youth leaders engaged to support the project and increase efforts to prevent SGBV.
ANPPCAN has a lot of experience at local, national and regional levels in creating and strengthening the capacities of local level structures to address issues of women and directly supporting vulnerable women.
ANPPCAN Gender Program Staff
ANPPCAN Women Program Unit is staffed by a team of professional and dedicated members who are well trained and experienced in gender issues and can deliver in time. This team is led by a trained and experienced program manager in addition to other training and work experience just completed a four month professional exchange program on women’s issues at the Next Door Solutions to Domestic Violence in San Jose, CA as a fellow of the United States Department of Educational and Cultural Affairs through IREX from August – December, 2012 and a three week course in May 2012 on Women, Peace & Security on UN Resolution 1325 in Stockholm, Sweden with the support of Indevelope, Kvinna til Kvinna & SIDA. The four other professional staff members have over five years of experience working on gender issues in Liberia and bags several certificates on gender and women’s issues.