A Story of Change in Insiza

The Situation

Gender Based Violence in this community before the introduction of to SASA! FAITH was a norm. Men generally undermined, exploited, and oppressed women and husbands never prioritized taking care of their wives. When the SASA! FAITH program was first introduced to this community by Emthonjeni Women’s Forum, men were skeptical. They were not happy at all because they initially thought that this program was mainly targeting women and they developed a negative attitude out of the view that the organization will dilute their cultural fibre and teach women to be disrespectful.

Our Intervention

The Response

We were then taught that the SASA! FAITH approach is meant for faith communities to learn, grow and change together and that men are not an exception. Men who have been exposed to the principles of SASA! FAITH have changed over the years and some of them are now spearheading the SASA FAITH initiatives in the community. Not only did the program help couples to balance power in their relationships, it has also economically empowered women through the Income Savings and Lending scheme which enabled them to buy livestock such as goats, cows, furniture and food for their families.

The Results

Congregants attest to the fact that women are now bringing more income than men through their projects. The SASA! FAITH program has greatly impacted how we deliver sermons in the churches especially mainstreaming issues of Violence Against Women (VAW) and how we can support people who are HIV+ and those living with disabilities. Women in the church are now given an opportunity to be in leadership positions and to preach in the church after we were taught as religious leaders that women are equally able to hold leadership positions at church and in the community. The church is now equipped on how best they can handle GBV cases instead of sweeping them under the carpet like we used to do (B.N).

The Evidence

Congregants attest to the fact that women are now bringing more income than men through their projects. The SASA! FAITH program has greatly impacted how we deliver sermons in the churches especially mainstreaming issues of Violence Against Women (VAW) and how we can support people who are HIV+ and those living with disabilities. Women in the church are now given an opportunity to be in leadership positions and to preach in the church after we were taught as religious leaders that women are equally able to hold leadership positions at church and in the community. The church is now equipped on how best they can handle GBV cases instead of sweeping them under the carpet like we used to do (B.N).
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