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Daily ArchiveDecember 2, 2017

Day 8 of 16 Days of Activism

16 Days of Activism against GBV has now reached the 8th day. Are you among those that are fighting against GBV? YONECO is supporting music competitions, road shows to raise awareness about the dangers of GBV as well as holding GBV awareness sessions in various primary schools in Mulanje district

Malawi Launches Ending Violence against Women and Girls Campaign

The Vice President of Malawi, Saulos Chilima, presided over the launch of Ending Violence against Women and Girls (EVAWG) Campaign at Bingu International Convention Centre (BICC) in Lilongwe.

YONECO participated in a panel discussion as well as displayed on a pavilion some of the major interventions which the organization implements in Malawi. YONECO showcased how the institution uses ICT platforms in prevention of Gender Based Violence (GBV) as well as how the Tithandizane Helpline Service operates as a source of information and a referral agent for GBV cases. Apart from Tithandizane Helpline Service’s GBV Crisis Line, YONECO has Places of Safety for survivors of GBV and child abuse.

In his remarks after the launch, the Executive Director for YONECO, MacBain Mkandawire, described the launch of the EVAWG Campaign as a right direction which Malawi has taken. In his remarks, Mkandawire stated that there is a need to address issues that negatively impact on socioeconomic development of women and girls Malawi. Mkandawire further said that YONECO’s Toll-free GBV crisis line registers a lot of GBV cases and called this as a manifestation of how big the problem is in the country. “As a country, we need to look at strengthening community systems to effectively respond to cases of GBV as well as raise awareness about its dangers” said Mkandawire.

In his speech, the Vice President also stated that the prevalence rate of violence against women and girls in Malawi is shockingly high hence the need to stop the malpractice.

The launch event was organized by Oxfam and it attracted various institutions and individuals who are working towards the promotion of girls and women’s rights.

Simavi Managers Visit Project Impact Areas in Mangochi.

A high-powered delegation from Simavi, was on an official engagement with various local development partners. The delegation; comprising of Aika van der Kleij, who is the Senior Programme Manager – Sexual Reproductive Health and her counterpart Connie de Vrie have been meeting Senior government representatives from various ministries and some members of Non-Governmental Organisations in Malawi.

Later during the visit, the team was joined by the Executive Director for Youth Net and Counselling (YONECO), Mac BainMkandawire and YONECO programmes team as well as other key district stakeholders during the field visits in Mangochi.

During the Mangochi field visit, the delegation visited two Traditional Authorities namely TA Nankumba and TA Makanjila. These are some of the areas where YONECO is implementing various projects that are being funded by Siamvi in Mangochi. Thus, the first field visit was made in the area of T/A Nankumba where YONECO is implementing Get Up Speak Out (GUSO) and Innovation Challenge Project. The following day, the team went to the area of T/A Makanjira where YONECO implementing Marriage No Child’s Play Project.

In his remarks, the District Social Welfare Officer, Willard Mphande commended Simavi for the positive impact it has made in the lives of people of Malawi through its local partners.

‘YONECO’s contribution to the development agenda of Malawi is widely recognized hence the organization enjoys massive support from various government departments in Mangochi district” said Mphande.

Simavi is one of YONECO’s longest and reliable partners from the Netherlands and the institution is currently funding three projects which YONECO is implementing in Mangochi namely; Get up Speak Out for Youth Rights (GUSO), Marriage No Child’s Play, and Innovation Challenge Project.

The delegates from Simavi witnessed various success stories achieved through the projects. Among other things, GUSO project has managed to empower young people who are now able to voice out their rights using various platforms like community theatre and radio. The project has further increased access and demand for SRH services among young people in the targeted areas. Under Marriage No Child’s Play, a number of child marriages have been annulled and a total of an overwhelming 205 girls have successfully been withdrawn from child marriages, the project also supported advocacy initiatives that led to the passing of Marriage, Divorce and Family Relations Act which raised official marriage age from 16 to 18 years. Under Innovations Challenge, which is a social accountability project, the youth have been empowered to access information through various Information Communication Technology (ICT).