The GEAR against IPV approach (Gender Equality Awareness Raising against Intimate Partner Violence) is a coordinated action of primary and secondary prevention of Intimate Partner Violence in adolescents’ relationships through interventions in the school or in other settings, that are guided by specially designed educational material and are aimed at secondary school students’ awareness raising and empowerment by specially trained teachers.
The main aim is to promote the development of healthy and equal relationships between the sexes and the development of zero tolerance towards violence by raising teens’ awareness on:
a) the characteristics of healthy and unhealthy relationships
b) the influence that gender stereotypical attitudes and socially imposed gender roles have on their relationships
c) how power inequality between the sexes is related to psychological, physical and/or sexual abuse against women/girls and
d) how adolescents can contribute to the prevention of all forms of gender-based violence.
Given the fact that almost all children and adolescents attend school, the educational system, at all levels, is the ideal setting for such an effort, where properly trained teachers can play a key role in the implementation of such interventions targeting the general population. The need for implementing in schools interventions related to gender stereotypes and equality, as a means of primary prevention of gender-based violence it is, therefore, imperative.
The GEAR against IPV approach is a proposal for systematic intervention in the school (or other) setting, where girls and boys are invited, through a series of experiential activities, to assess but also challenge their culturally “inherited” gender stereotypes and to approach differences between sexes as individual differences rather than as characteristics of superiority of one sex over the other.
The GEAR against IPV Approach
- · uses exclusively experiential activities through which, adolescents are not taught, but guided to explore their personal gender stereotypical attitudes and their impact to their own lives, to “discover” and to exercise life skills that will help them to develop healthy relationships, free from any form of violence
- · introduces gender equality in education as a violence prevention strategy, motivates and qualifies teachers with the necessary skills and the “know how” in order to implement such primary prevention interventions
- · when integrated into the school curriculum, it enhances a) the preventive character of the intervention, as it conveys the message that schools and teachers do care about and take action towards gender equality and elimination of violence from adolescents’ relationships, and b) the sustainability of such interventions, as teachers comprise a permanent “task force” at schools and, therefore, they can implement such interventions on a permanent basis
- · allows access to the general population of children/adolescents, even in remote areas
- · has already been implemented and evaluated, on a pilot basis, and appears to be effective in increasing adolescents’ knowledge and modifying their tolerant attitudes towards gender-based violence
- · consists a precise fulfillment of Article 14 of the Council of Europe (2011) Convention on preventing and combating violence against women and domestic violence, which our country has signed in 2014. In this article, that concerns education, it is clearly stated that such type of “teaching material on issues such as equality between women and men, non-stereotyped gender roles, mutual respect, non-violent conflict resolution in interpersonal relationships, gender-based violence against women and the right to personal integrity, adapted to the evolving capacity of learners” should be included not only “in formal curricula and at all levels of education”, but also “in informal educational facilities, as well as in sports, cultural and leisure facilities and the media”.
The GEAR against IPV ΙΙ Project in Romania
includes the following activities:
Þ Development, cultural adaptation and evaluation of the Romanian GEAR against IPV Package
Þ Implementation and evaluation of seminars for 50 teachers from different areas of Romania [seminar’s duration: 24 hours (3 days)]
Þ Implementation and evaluation of 11 adolescents’ awareness raising workshops in secondary schools and other settings, in different regions of Romania (minimum duration of each workshop: 13 teaching hours)
Þ realization of an informational and awareness raising campaign on gender-based violence for adolescents, via material and messages that will derive during the workshops’ implementation from the products that adolescents will have created
Þ presentation of the project’s results in a Conference with the active involvement of adolescents and teachers who participated in the workshops
Þ Promotion and lobbying for the incorporation of the educational material and the adolescents’ awareness raising workshops in the school curricula of secondary education
European Conference that will be held in Athens aiming to the wide dissemination of the GEAR against IPV approach and its results, as well as to the promotion of developing new National Packages for all EU Member States, candidate and potential candidate countries
Title Gender Equality Awareness Raising against Intimate Partner Violence – II
Project No JUST/2013/DAP/AG/5408
Duration October 2014 – September 2016
- Mediterranean Institute of Gender Studies (MIGS), Cyprus
- Center for Education, Counselling and Research (CESI), Croatia
- Association for Gender Equality and Liberty (ALEG), Romania
- Plataforma Unitària contra les Violències de Gènere, Spain
- The Smile of the Child, Creece
Coordinator European Anti-Violence Network (EAVN), Greece
External Evaluator Prof. Carol Hagemann-White
With financial support from the DAPHNE III Programme of the European Union
This leaflet has been produced with the financial support of the DAPHNE III Programme of European Union. The contents of this publication are the sole responsibility of European Anti-Violence Network and of the project’s partnership, and can in no way be taken to reflect the views of the European Commission.