We are pleased to announce that 2017 will see our new project ‘I Act’ come to fruition, with the generous support of the European Youth Foundation of the Council of Europe. The work plan project taking place for the duration of 2017 will look at the prevention of sexual violence from the bystander approach. You are an active bystander when you take responsibility and choose to act when you see something happening that could lead to an act of sexual violence. Each individual action might not seem like it will make a difference but if we all choose to act, it can create a much bigger change.
We started a campaign on the ‘I Act’ campaign earlier this year, with some fantastic visual resources and campaign tools being created by some of our volunteers. You can take a look at the materials here (also available in Spanish, French, German, Finnish, Swedish, Arabic, Hebrew and Georgian).
The new work plan will focus on five areas:
1. ‘I Act’ online platform – this platform will build on the existing campaign materials, provide online training for leaders and members on the topic, and give space for members to mark on a map their green thumbprints (where they have chosen to act to prevent sexual violence or taken part in a training on ‘I Act’)
2. Training of Trainers on the prevention of sexual violence – taking place in May 2017, young members and leaders from Council of Europe member states will be invited to come together for one week to take part in this training to look at patterns of sexual violence, think about how to identify sexual violence, analyse power structures in relation to sexual violence and come up with methods about how to put the bystander model into practice
3. ‘I Act’ brochure pack – this pack will provide information and tips on the ‘I Act’ campaign and IFM-SEI’s approach to the prevention of sexual violence, which will be distributed to all member organisations in advance of the international action day
4. International action day – coordinated around the Day of the Elimination of Violence Against Women, on 25 November 2017, IFM-SEI member organisations will be given tools, resources, motivation and confidence to run activities around the ‘I Act’ project all across the world, whether a training day, public action or social media campaign
The work will be supported by a focus group, consisting of five IFM-SEI members, who will lead the work in the first half of the year including developing a detailed work plan, developing the online training and sharing platform and creating educational resources for members. An international action day planning team, made up of six motivated people from the Training of Trainers, will come together in September to prepare organisations for the international action day.
We’re very excited about our new project and hope to see you engaged with it over the next year. Huge thanks to the European Youth Foundation for making this possible!