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Boy – child advocacy group partners Lagos on gender – based violence.

In order to re-orient boys and men on issues bordering on gender-based violence, a boy-child transformation movement, Boys Quarters Africa is collaborating with the Lagos Domestic and Sexual Violence Agency on the ‘Project Sabi Initiative’.
In a meeting during the week with the Executive Secretary, Lagos State Domestic and Sexual Violence Agency – Mrs Lola Vivour-Adeniyi, the founder of Boys Quarters Africa, Solomon Ayodele re-iterated the organisation’s plan to collaborate with the agency on the project.
Ayodele revealed that the project, which will run for eighteen months, is in partnership with Connected Development (CODE) and Oxfam-Voice and aims at educating boys from thirty schools in Lagos, Enugu and Abuja.
“Ignorance plays a major role when it comes to combatting gender-based violence, especially as it relates to men and boys. It is easy to fix men, but it’s easier to build boys. For men, it could be just sheer ignorance because some of these things have been passed down culturally by their parents. Some of the things we know about consent today were things we were never taught. We believe that if you don’t educate, you cannot criticize. That’s why we are paying a lot of attention to education.” he noted.
He also stated that the organization plans to run a training programme for the National Union of Road Transport Workers (NURTW) to tackle gender-based violence across motor parks.
“There is a lot of assumption when it comes to gender-based violence as it relates to men and boys. We thought of creating grassroots mobilisation where we can sit men, boys down and educate them, more like an awareness project to take out that gender box where the world feels mean and boys know,” he said.
Ayodele also emphasised that men and boys are key players in the campaign against gender-based violence, thus the major point of collaboration with the agency is the creation of Boys Club, as well as utilizing the already existing templates of the agency in terms of curriculum development, data, mobilisation of facilitators among others.
On her part, Lola Vivour-Adeniyi commended the organization’s initiative and pledged her support to the project. She also highlighted the agency’s efforts towards tackling gender-based violence.
Her words: “The agency is doing a lot, especially collaborating with the Ministry of Justice, Education, WAPA, to ensure the sustainability of combating gender based violence and we are progressing. We are open to partnering in the areas of training, providing mentors for boys, inaugurating clubs in schools. All hands have to be on deck and the agency remains committed to instilling the right values.” she said.
The highlight of the meeting was the presentation of a SABI Tee Shirt to the agency’s Executive Director as an ambassador in mobilising men and boys towards ending violence against women and girls.