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The Reality of VAWC

Community Based Group Against VAWC (Bantay Panimalay)

I have been away in the island of Samar shuttling from one village to another to conduct consciousness raising seminars on the reality of violence against women and children.Mind you, one didn't have to go far for examples. Almost everyone (95%) of the nearly 500 women and men we conversed with have experienced abuse at one point in their lives. Most admitted that they were physically and verbally abused by members of their families during their childhood as a form of punishment for unsatisfactory performance of house chores; for choosing play over work. Spanking by using soft brooms or broomsticks were common; some were placed inside a sack and hung; boys were usually punched and kicked.A number experienced sexual abuse when they were just girls/boys and glad that they weren't raped.

The stories of Allan from San Roque, and Leila (not their real names) from Catarman both of Northern Samar are unforgettable. Allan was picked up, interrogated, punched and threatened by the military and was being forced to admit that they were NPAs. Leila and her brother were separated from their parents when the military strafed their house in Silvino Lobos. Her mother and stepfather jumped out of the window into the river. She did not hear of them since then. There are also widows who aren't sure if their husbands are already dead because they simply disappeared (desparecidos).

All of them were hurt, most felt angry and many feared for their own lives. Several ran away from home, a few eloped and married young while many dropped out of school. What amazes me is their ability to forgive their perpetrators (parents, siblings,relatives, teachers, military). They went on with their lives and vowed not let their children suffer as they did.

I sincerely thank them for trusting us with their stories. We jointly vowed to work together to break the cycle of violence. Our children and their children are luckier now that we parents know how to discipline our children without inflicting pain on them.



olutosin's picture

Thanks for the good work

I appreciate your efforts, thanks os much for doing such good works.

Olutosin Oladosu Adebowale
Founder/Project Coordinator
Star of Hope Transformation Centre
512 Road
F Close
Festac Town


usha kc's picture

Dear Paulina, really great,

Dear Paulina, really great, great and great.keep sharing more. Thank you for it.

Paulina Lawsin's picture

THe Reality of VAWC

Thank you Usha. What's the situation in Nepal? in your community? is their bride/widow burning there?

usha kc's picture

Widow burning ( Sati pratha)

Widow burning ( Sati pratha) was in practice very long ago. But now this practice has been prohabited by law.As I know throuhg reading and knowing from my grannies sati actually was supposed to be volunteerly but practiced was not like that women were forced to do so.
I can't even imagine such a crual practice!! but we women have been tolarating so panic situation since long.

Paulina Lawsin's picture

Sati pratha

THanks for the immediate reply Usha. Have you read the news about Indian Muslim mothers who strangled to death their own daughters for marrying Hindu men? Are most women free to choose their husbands? Is arranged marriaged being practiced?

Have a 1001 questions. Hehehe!


usha kc's picture

Actually I have not read

Actually I have not read this news but really having so many questionsssss here and there!! Thank you friend for much concerning on women issues! I love it.

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