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Community Patrols

Talking with a friend of mine that is from a village in Philippines, we came with this idea of having a strong woman that will take the leadership and train people from their community, creating a patrol team that will take care of the village or different districts in case of bigger urban areas.

Photo of Carmen Escano
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This team will be trained to react in distress situations and also will be helping as a counselor to help people reporting when they have been witnesses of any kind of abuse. 

This patrol team will gather every week and will report the findings and situations of every area they are covering. This will help to manage and organise the “soldiers” depending on the different needs of every area. 

The improvements will be advertise, so for example if a district hasn’t got any abuse in the last month it will be published and this will help residents to feel safer, and it will also contribute to the Mark Granovetter threshold model, which assumes that individuals’ behaviour depends on the number of other individuals already engaging in that behaviour. If we lower this kind of behaviour we lower the probability to get more people engage in this kind of behaviour. 

This community vigilance will make people feel safer, during day and night and will create a sense of community where everyone can help to make the situation better (seeing the results and the power of reporting). This could be a starting point to help women to have more freedom to move around and for example start to create their own business. 

This patrol teaching center can also work together with this idea:  http://www.openideo.com/challenge/womens-safety/ideas/create-awareness-educate-women 

Explain your idea in one sentence.

A trained patrol team made from people from the community that will monitor and report from a specific area. This patrol will help to make the area a safer place, and also they will collect valuable information that will be used for analysis and for taking further actions.

What is the need you are trying to solve?

Empowering women and girls starts with basic human rights as freedom and safety. If we can help with this issue then the rest could come smoother later.

Who will benefit from this idea and how would you monitor its success?

Any person from the community, but mainly people that under any threat or in a disadvantaged situation

Who would be best equipped to implement this idea in the real world? You? Your organisation? Another organisation or entity?

Any organisation who is based locally that can supervise the idea. An NGO, or the government that will give power to a strong women that is up to implement in their village or district.

13 comments

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Photo of Swetha Davuluri
Team

Hey, great idea! Mine is similar to that of yours. Would be glad if you could check out my idea too: http://www.openideo.com/challenge/womens-safety/ideas/create-awareness-educate-women

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Photo of Carmen Escano
Team

Hi Swetha! nice to point this out! I definitely think this two ideas can work together! The patrol team training can also be taught to women that want to learn more self defence and feel more confident. I have added the link of your idea! looking forward to redefine the idea together

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Photo of Swetha Davuluri
Team

Yes, I feel the same Carmen. Thank you for adding my idea with your's . Looking forward to discuss more on this with you.

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Photo of Meena Kadri
Team

Great to hear about your collaboration on this!.Especially as Swetha is planning outreach with low-income communities – and prototyping with real end users seeking their feedback is a big part of this challenge. Would be interesting to find out what might motivate women in these communities to volunteer for something like this – and to think further on what training they might need and how it could be delivered and scaled across locations. We're excited to see what you find from discussing with women in these contexts and seeing both these ideas grow!

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Photo of Swetha Davuluri
Team

Thank you!

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Photo of DeletedUser
Team

DeletedUser

Hi Carmen,

Your idea reminds me of a program called "neighborhood Watch" in the United States. Apparently, it works very well when you have the community participating in reporting suspicious activities. Here is a video from YouTube...

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=gWjiK8aTakM

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Photo of Carmen Escano
Team

Hi Michel, this is great! the role of the citizens is crucial to create a welfare environment. This reporting will also help to prevent people of committing acts of vandalism. thanks for the link.

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Photo of Anne-Laure Fayard
Team

Interesting idea Carmen.
It reminded me of a research post: http://www.openideo.com/challenge/womens-safety/research/gulabi-pink-gang-the-indian-women-vigilantes
In fact there were several post on the Gulabi pink gang during the research phase.
I also like the idea of posting safety results as an artifact which will 1) create a sense of safety, 2) potentially discourage violent behaviors.
It might be worth also researching more the Gulabi Pink Gang to see if any similar initiatives were started...

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Photo of Anne-Laure Fayard
Team

Carmen, as I was reviewing some ideas from the research phase, I found this post that made me think of your idea: https://openideo.com/challenge/womens-safety/research/redbrigade-a-support-group-of-local-women-in-lucknow-trained-to-protect
It might be worth looking at this example.

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Photo of Carmen Escano
Team

Hi Anne-Laure, thank you very much for connecting the dots! They are great examples of real cases and is definitely worth to look at it and learn from them. Thanks

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Photo of Anne-Laure Fayard
Team

Thanks for adding me to your team. Glad you found these posts useful. Looking forward to seeing this idea evolve.

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Photo of Neysan Zölzer
Team

Hola Carmen. This is fantastic! What kind of training and what kinds of responses are you envisioning for the team? Is there a way to shift from trying to remove something negative to creating something positive? Can the teams be used to raise awareness about the issues or contribute to community education on the issue? Just a few thoughts :)

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Photo of Carmen Escano
Team

Hola Neysan! Thanks a lot for your input. The kind of training I was thinking is more a self confidence and awareness than brutal or aggressive training. It will be about empower the women to understand and believe that they should not allow to be treated in a vexatious way, and of course seeking for the collaboration with men in the community to educate everyone. This patrols are not meant to react brutally or with the force in case of emergency but instead to create an entity that builds confidence and helps avoid potential problems. Although women will be trained is self defence because this will encourage them to believe that they are capable to react, but it will be only for self defence and not for creating more aggressive behaviours in the community. The most important thing is the organisations of this patrols and to have a central unit where everyone can report and decide if there is need to take further measures, like more vigilants, or more education for awareness, or more counselors, etc.