There is a growing body of evidence that positive parenting across the child life-cycle enhances positive relationships between children and parents/caregivers as well as contributes to child development in terms of physical, health, emotional and behavioral as important ingredients in addressing physical, sexual and psychological violence. Children from families with high incidences of violence tend to replicate interpersonal behavior models and coping strategies they have been exposed to early in life. As a result, these children are at a greater risk of being both victims and perpetrators of violence throughout their lives. These children also find it hard to form relationships that are equitable and respectful at home, at work and in their communities, and are less likely to become positive parents to their own children. BJI priority is investment in early childhood, adolescent and parenting programme including school readiness as well as strengthening family support.
Gender based violence impairs women’s economic productivity in both the formal and informal sectors, often impacting their ability to care for their families, including the elderly. Economic insecurity is a powerful trigger that can lead to increased intimate partner violence and other abuse and exploitation. Furthermore, the gender power imbalance and limited reproductive and sexual decision-making power women have is often interrelated with economic dependence and skewed gender norms. In addition, poverty is a stress trigger that places women and children at higher risk of violence. Hence the plan envisages mainstreaming gender dimensions in this thematic area so as to provide women opportunities for a better life including increased employment opportunities, access to revenue and expanded investment in the local community, while reducing the risk of violence on children
Formal and non-formal education serves as a protection function and provides a powerful conduit for reaching communities on how to prevent and respond to violence. Additionally, every child and adult in educational settings must be able to participate in their learning without fear of violence. BJI incorporates Virtues Project to address violence within educational settings. To effectively attain violence free schools, BJI emphasizes fully engagement of school board members, administrators, parents, students, community members, emergency response personnel and law enforcers in finding collaborative solutions for prevention and response. Interventions under this thematic area include: enhancing teachers’ skills in positive parenting and promoting positive discipline; helping children to learn discipline through enhancing their own moral development, protection and life skills; ensuring that schools have a referral system for children in need of response services; introducing the positive parenting curriculum; promoting child participation through establishing children’s clubs in schools; and providing school hygiene.
The causes of violence in public spaces are multi-faceted. Thus, stopping violence in this environment requires multi-dimensional actions engaging all members of a community in a holistic environment that is safe for all. BJI supports government recognition through the Constitution of the United Republic of Tanzania and its principle laws:
- That all citizens should be able to move around public and private environments free from fear of violence;
- That there needs to be increased institutional accountability to prevent and reduce violence against women and children;
- That there needs to be increased enforcement of policies and laws in the labour, public and private sectors to prevent and reduce violence against women and children; and
- That an increase of enforcement and accountability for the regulation of recreational spaces is critical to prevent and reduce violence against women and children.
- manner. Parents, social workers, community leaders (political, traditional and religious) and institutions must work side-by-side with the private and public sector to create an
Tanzania Development Vision 2025 underlines the importance of peace and social tolerance and sets a goal for gender equality and empowerment of women in all socio-economic and political spheres. When there are failures of tolerance, i.e., when social norms allow or encourage violence and when norms perpetuate unequal relations based on gender, women and children are the primary victims. They become more vulnerable to physical, sexual and psychological violence in their homes and in their communities. They are more likely to be victims of abusive practices, such as female genital mutilation and child marriage. A priority of BJI is to encourage and support communities through traditional leaders, political leaders and interfaith/religious leaders to empower women and children to stand against violence wherever and whenever they see it while effectively engaging men in the whole process. Also, BJI seeks use interfaith groups to modify harmful gender norms that perpetuate harmful traditional practices such as FGM and child marriage, as well as parenting norms that condone physical and emotional violence against children or that result in violation cases going un-reported.
KEY INTERVENTIONS APPROACH
- Promote positive parenting/caregiving while incorporating Virtues Project for Early Childhood Development (ECD) and older children programmes at homes and schools;
- Child-friendly Legal Aid Provision (CLAP) for potential and actual child victims of violence in civil and criminal matters that directly or indirectly affect the best interest of a child;
- To strategically engage the government (through its responsible Ministries and agencies), Women and Children Protection Committees (WCPCs), Inter-Faith Committees (IFCs), women’s self-help and other social groups and key stakeholders in creating enabling legal and socio-economic environment for women and children safety, gender equality and household economic strengthening through women economic empowerment; and Strengthening local structures and interfaith relations on prevention and response of Violence Against Women and Children and promotion of gender inclusive norms through dialogues that bring about collective actions to create a safe environment for women and children.