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Congratulations to the whole team! Your idea is very great; I wish it gets one day implemented in my country, DRC. All the best

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NDUME commented on SRH Services Access Facilitation and Education (SAFE)

Dear Ashley,
Thank you so much for the new positive feedback! Actually, the expects have pinpointed what is really needy and challenging for this idea. Hopefully, future feedback and eventual accompaniment will enable all of us make it real and thereby save lives of many rural youths. Again, thank you for sharing.

Ndume

Thank you so much for your valuable feedback from which I have deducted three main questions for which I provide answers here-under. You will also note that some more information has been added in the body of the challenge.

1) The success of our idea relies on the participation of all community members since SRHR and SGBV are public issues. Although men and boys have been, for decades, portrayed as perpetrators of violence against women and girls, field experience has, however, shown that, apart from being survivors themselves, many men and boys have the capacity to be partners and allies. Taking into consideration feedback from community members, we will identify male agents of change who will be individually strengthened in terms of knowledge and skills so that they can model positive gender attitudes and behaviours, challenging discriminatory social norms. Either, both boys and girls will be part of the clubs so that community education on gender equality, masculinity, etc. is promoted. Be tough, be strong, fight, do not cry, show no emotions, do not back down, don’t access healthcare unless it is serious, have sex, have multiple partners, don’t use condoms, ... are some of key messages most boys and men get from their peers, families, communities, and societies about masculinity, what puts women and girls at greater risks of violence and health problems, especially in emergency settings. The resulting wrong perception is more rigid in indigenous communities and must be addressed from within by men and boys as well as by women and girls.

2) Working in emergencies is risky for the project itself, the beneficiaries, and the staff. In some areas, the security situation may be fragile. Some times, local authorities may refuse to facilitate activities or get involved. Either, IDPs may expect to get some payments as they are living miserably. In order to deal with the identified risks, following measures are anticipated: Respect of DO NO HARM principle; consider security threat levels as provided by UNDSS; non-discrimination; clear and public presentation of the project; signed agreements with authorities and other stakeholders involved in the project to insure their full implication. Though addressing safety and security in an emergency setting would require a specific project, from feedback phase we have learnt that safety audits can be conducted as part of evidence collection to inform the sensitization topics during drama. The goal is not only to raise awareness about possible risks that may be encountered when accessing services but also to advocate for a safer physical environment on the way to and around public latrines and showers, water points, distribution sites, etc.

3) Social norms are shared beliefs that shape mutual expectations about appropriate behaviours. They are about TYPICAL and APPROPRIATE behaviours within reference groups. In order to identify and measure social norm change we will make use of specific questions and metrics compared to the ones used for measuring individual attitudes and behaviour. We will go beyond the KAP survey in order to uncover the beliefs about others. Concrete questions will focus on the reference group whose opinion matters to the target group; whether a given behaviour is perceived as typical or appropriate; whether the majority of people would act in a given way even if others disagree; etc. Furthermore, we will make use of both qualitative and quantitative research methods with, respectively, social approval/disapproval indicators on the one hand, and, on the other, proportion of men or women who agree with.... or believe that....or do this....To that end, a baseline and endline survey will be conducted.

At SAFEKA we are conscious that complete change in social norms needs requires much time. However, a well designed human-centered short intervention can at least show preliminary symptoms of change on which a longer programme can build.