Started in January 2016, WE GO! (Women Economic-independence & Growth Opportunity) is a two-year project cofinanced by the European Union focusing on women undergoing intimate partner violence. The project has been implemented by 15 partners based in 7 EU countries (Italy, Spain, Greece, Bulgaria, Cyprus, United Kingdom and Sweden).
The project intended to strengthen support services for women undergoing intimate partner violence (IPV) and in particular the activities run by anti-violence centres (AVCs) aiming at empowering women.
During the final conference, held in Brussels at the European Parliament on November 30th 2017, the activities conducted during the two years and the outcomes were presented to the European Commission delegates, to the MEPs and to a wide public.
The project involved 78 professionals and practitioners in comparative analysis and exchange activities.
Through the 3 mutual learning events, WE GO! has highlighted how the exchange of experiences among practitioners should be encouraged and promoted in order to reinforce the quality of the services provided. 19 training of trainers on the content and tools of the training toolkit targeting social workers and practitioners of the AVCs involved, as well as external practitioners were realised.
Core activity of the project was the Training for Women supported by AVCs involved in the project for promoting their personal and economic empowerment and fostering their capacities and possibilities to attain economic independence. Mentorship activities were also carried out to provide guidance to women to build future projects and economic opportunities.
Training of Women in numbers:
- 25 group training paths with survivors;
- 64 one to one training paths with survivors;
- 250 women involved in economic empowerment activities;
The training toolkit, targeting practitioners and AVCs to enhance their capacity to respond to survivors’ needs, has and will be widely disseminated to anti-violence centres across the EU, with the aim of promoting knowledge and spreading effective practices on the issue of women’s economic empowerment. You can find the toolkit here: http://www.wegoproject.eu/toolkit/introduction
What happens now?
WE GO! will continue to pursue its objectives and to extend them all over the Europe by :
- sharing the Research and Analysis report;
- sharing the data collection methodology with AVCs all over EU and by encouraging them to use it;
- promoting the Training Toolkit among AVCs across the EU;
- sharing and presenting the Final narrative report including EU and National policy recommendations to national and local policy and decision makers and with key stakeholders.
Moreover in the coming years other 600 women undergoing IPV will benefit of the Training of Women carried out with the WE GO! Methodology.
Our final recommendations…
Organizations and AVCs involved in WE GO! Project ask National and European Institutions to support Anti-violence Centres in their activities aimed to give an adequate response to women who decide to say “no!” to violence; it’s necessary to include in national statistics on violence against women data collection and analysis on the socio-economic profile of women undergoing gender-based violence, including IPV.
Organizations and AVCs ask the Institutions to support the economic empowerment of women who suffered violence, with dedicated professional and education programs and job placement activities. Moreover, policies should include both shelters and long-term temporary safe housing solutions among the services that need to be provided and ensure that children of IPV survivors can access quality and affordable childcare services, so that their mothers can engage in income generating activities and have time to dedicate to their personal and professional development.