Grace & Light is supporting Tearfund’s sexual & gender-based violence programme in Nigeria.
International coordinator Tassie Ghata and programme officer Pofi Josiah joined Tearfund’s five-day training in Abuja from 19 February, along with delegates from partner organisations in many countries. Training was delivered by three facilitators from Tearfund’s headquarters in the United Kingdom.
“Sexual and gender violence is happening everywhere across the world,” said Tassie. “We were able to share our experiences with delegates from other African and Asia countries, learning from each other.
“Jesus is our model. He had God-given power and used it to honour both genders, modelling the way we are supposed to live with each other.”
The programme helps faith leaders respond effectively to the causes of sexual exploitation and abuse of children, women and men – things like poverty, forced marriages, multiple sexual partners, decline of cultural values and the insurgency in the North East.
According to the Nigeria Demographic & Health Survey, in 2013 almost 30 per cent of Nigerian women had experienced physical violence by the time they were 15.
“We are delighted that Tearfund invited us to participate in the training. For us it indicates they recognise our work around sexual violence and are treating us as a partner, even though Tearfund does not directly support our activities,” said Tassie.
She is now tailoring the training for Grace & Light and will be delivering a three-day programme for staff and volunteers from 7-9 March in the Jos head office.