By Edrissa Jallow
The Finance and Project Coordinator for Women’s Association for Victims Empowerment (WAVE), Ms Mariam J Ceesay told delegates at Farafenni that individual efforts alone cannot address gender-based violence but require concerted collective community action.
As part of the 16 days of activism campaign, WAVE in Partnership with Peace of Mind (POM) and Fantanka engaged four communities in the Central River Region (CRR) to shed light on Sexual and Gender-Based Violence (SGBV) cases on Tuesday 28th November 2023.
The engagement which took place at Wallyman Lodge conference hall in Farafenni, converged some 51 representatives from Panchang, Njau, Kerr Mot Ali. The day-long dialogue which was funded by the United Nations Development Program (UNDP) is part of Civil Society Organisations efforts to progress the Transitional Justice process in The Gambia.
“Violence against women and girls is not a problem that can be solved by individuals or organizations alone. It requires a collective effort, involving community leaders, policymakers, educators, law enforcement agencies, civil society, and most importantly, the active participation of everyone sitting here today,” said Ms Ceesay during her welcoming remarks.
According to the Finance and Programs Coordinator, violence against women and girls is a “pervasive and deeply-rooted issue that affects millions of lives globally”. She added that violence against women and girls robs “their dignity, safety, and fundamental human rights,” however, “today, here in our community, we are taking a stand against this injustice. We [WAVE] are committed to creating a safer and more equitable society for everyone, regardless of their gender”.
The engagement brought together representatives from Njau Police, Njau Health Clinic, the Central River Region (CRR) Children Parliamentarian and the Gender and Child Welfare Unit from Kaur Police.
WAVE is a women’s rights and women-led organization, established to raise awareness on sexual and gender-based violence, help access to humanitarian needs and support women victims of Human rights violence. WAVE has been playing a pivotal role in The Gambia’s transitional justice process.