A to Z to safety

A-Z to Safety is a 6-member partnership based in the UK, Germany, Austria, Bulgaria and Turkey (Associate). The project aims to create safe environments for women and girls; combat and prevent injustice against women and girls from violence linked to harmful practices (VHP) and uphold the Charter of Fundamental Rights of the European Union.

IKWRO (UK) as lead partner has successfully raised the profile of violence against BME women transnationaly, specifically ‘honour’ based violence and forced marriage. Executive Director, Diana Nammi, was named among ‘the 150 ‘women who shook the world’ in a Women in the World Summit in USA for her work in ‘honour’ based violence and forced marriage. The Justice for Banaz campaign led by IKWRO was turned into a documentary film under the name of ‘Banaz: A Love Story’, shown on main TV channels and won an Emmy Award for best international documentary
film.

RWA (UK) has many years experience of empowering migrant women through employment, skills development and training, working closely with government in campaiging on issues of integration of migrant women in the society. RWA also has many years experience of managing UK and European partnership.

PAPATYA (Germany) has produced many research papers and reports on forced marriage in Germany, managed DAPHNE projects and runs a shelter for migrant girls of Turkish/Kurdish
background fleeing harmful practices.

Orient Express (Austria) has extensive experience of working with Turkish, Kurdish, Iranian, Arabic speaking nationals and runs a shelter for girls and young women fleeing forced marriage.

Animus (Bulgara) is a well established centre providing counselling, advice and advocacy for women and girls fleeing violence in Bulgaria and runs a crisis shelter for women.

KAMER (Turkey) (associate partner) provides support and counselling for women and girls fleeing violence.

What does the A to Z to Safety project do?

  • prevent, and protect women and girls from harmful practices
  • increase accessibility of services for women and girls
  • empower women and girls
  • facilitate and encourage direct participation of communities in preventing harmful practices
  • ensure sustainability of services through improved data collection, training and dissemination of good practice
  • add value to practice at a European level

What do we deliver?

  • Accessible information advice and guidance – both 1:1 on our premises and on an outreach basis to 400 women and girls and through National Helplines to 2,400 women, young girls and professionals.
  • Counseling to address anxiety, depression and post-traumatic stress caused by violence, abuse and death threats, and to increase confidence for 200 women and girls
  • 160 targeted awareness raising workshops and 6 steering group meetings for communities to challenge their belief systems
  • 320 training workshops and 6 steering group meetings for professionals to increase their understanding of VHP and enable more effective support to women and girls
  • Mainstreaming of VHP training as part of Continuous Professional Development for professionals in key agencies
  • Guidelines on Community Participation aimed at ending VHP; and Service Standards to inform the design of services for women and girls affected by harmful practices
  • Skills development to increase women and girls’ confidence, self-esteem, employability and financial independence: 70 in leadership courses; 90 in rights and entitlements; 50 in numeracy; 70 in employability and 20 women receiving employment support and jobs.
  • A new ‘practioners’ website to share data, resources, Guidelines and Service Standards with EU partners, countries, EU and national legislators and government agencies and a conference for 200 participants.
  • Campaigning and lobbying politicians and legislative bodies at national and EU levels to bring about changes in policy and legislation to ensure safe safety for our beneficiaries.

Who do we work with?
The Project has 6 target groups:

  1. Iranian, Kurdish, Turkish, Afghan, Arab, Roma and other Black and Minority Ethnic (BME) women and girls residing in partner and other EU countries: mainly migrants, refugees/asylum seekers who have arrived in the EU individually or with their families due to civil unrest, economic/political difficulties and commonly coming from countries that deny basic human rights and have strong patriarchal roots. These women and girls continue to be subjected to VHP in host countries. Our beneficiaries include women who have never been allowed to develop economic independence which increases their vulnerability.
  2. Professionals in a prime position to practically assist our beneficiaries: teachers, social workers, police, NGO coordinators, and national/local government policy makers and officials e.g. housing and health workers and their professional training bodies.
  3. Communities that need to change their mindset about harmful practices in order to eradicate this violence.
  4. The media through which we aim to raise public awareness and impact on policy, practice and legislation.
  5. Practitioners across the EU who need to access to reliable data and resources in order to impact positively in ending VHP in the EU.
  6. EU and national legislators, policy and decision-makers who can initiate and implement changes to legislation and government practice.
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