Boys' Empathy Programme
One of our key new strategic initiatives for 2017 is the formal launch of our new educational programme for boys, designed to bring about fundamental changes in attitude. We believe that deeply-seated views about women and their place in the home and society can lie at the heart of violent behaviours and, subsequently, how survivors are treated by their family, community, the legal system and by wider society.
So far, we have conducted pilot sessions for young boys aged between 10 and 13 years in South Africa (where we have taught 332 boys) and India (where we have taught 191).
Our Empathy programme seeks to break down stereotypes and build feelings of empathy towards women and girls with the purpose - in the longer-term - of preventing the development of abusive or violent behaviour.
Although still in pilot stage, two independent research studies have already been conducted in South Africa to assess the impact of the programme. The most recent of these (with a sample group of 72 boys) revealed the following findings:
This programme lies at the heart of our strong belief that, in order to prevent violence towards women, it is imperative to educate boys.