HAYA Joint Programme to Eliminate Violence against Women: PCHR Concludes Five Training Courses for Educational Institutions’ Staff
The Palestinian Centre for Human Rights (PCHR) concluded the first five training courses under the HAYA Joint Programme “Awareness-Raising and Capacity Building for Educational Institutions’ Staff to Eliminate Violence against Women.” These training courses were conducted in cooperation with United Nations Relief and Works Agency (UNRWA) to train teachers working in UNRWA schools across the Gaza Strip. On 19 January 2020, PCHR began the first training course. Each course lasted twenty-five-hours in duration over the course of five days and was attended by 140 participants, including 87 female teachers and a female participation rate of 66 per cent.
This training course is a part of a project conducted in partnership between PCHR and the United Nations Entity for Gender Equality and the Empowerment of Women (UN Women) through the HAYA Joint Programme, funded by the Government of Canada. The project aims to develop the knowledge and skills of teachers to contribute to decreasing violence against women, particularly gender-based violence, based on an updated educational methodology promoting human rights.
The training program addresses several topics that meet the needs of the participants and promote the concepts of human rights, particularly women’s rights as stipulated in international conventions and gender-based violence issues. The topics covered in the training program include the following: the concepts, forms, causes, and means to address gender-based violence; the legal intervention and protection mechanisms for women who are victims of violence; Palestinian legislations and their role in protecting women; national intervention program for the victims of violence; and the role of teachers in decreasing the phenomenon of violence.
At the trainings’ closing ceremony, PCHR Director Raji Sourani praised the collaborative relations and joint cooperation between PCHR and UNRWA’s education sector. He added that during the past few years, PCHR conducted dozens of training courses for teachers to provide them with knowledge on human rights in order to contribute to a generation fully cognizant of their rights and freedoms. He also stressed the vial role of Palestinian women in the establishment and development of their society especially having made numerous and significant contributions at all levels in this field in the past.
Mona al-Shawa, Head of PCHR’s Women’s Rights Unit, stated that since its inception, PCHR established a unit specialized in disseminating and enhancing women’s rights in the Palestinian society, supporting all efforts to achieve justice and redress for victims of violence; and providing legal aid and consultation for these victims. Shawa added that teachers play a major role in combating violence, and these training courses focused on cases addressing the teachers’ main needs to be able to execute this role.
Mr. Khaled Abu Safiyah, UNRWA Human Rights Monitor, praised the training program and its contribution to raising awareness and capacity building of educational institutions’ staff in working to eliminate violence against women. He emphasized that this training course has given them new knowledge.
Mr. Fares Tawil, Project Manager for the UN Women component under the HAYA Joint Programme, stressed that the HAYA Joint Programme aims to promote positive practices and attitudes towards preventing and protecting women and girls from violence. Through raising the awareness and skills of teachers and students on violence against women contributes to the achievement of the HAYA Joint Programme’s goals.
The participants affirmed that the course covered a variety of relevant topics, and the trainers efficient, varies, and and interactive training methods used in the course shed light on several important topics, all of which served to enhance and develop their professional skills.
At the end of the ceremony, all participants in the training course were awarded certificates for successfully completed the training program.
The five-year HAYA Joint Programme seeks to eliminate violence against women in the West Bank and Gaza Strip. HAYA is funded by the Government of Canada and jointly implemented by the United Nations Entity for Gender Equality and the Empowerment of Women (UN Women), the United Nations Population Fund (UNFPA), the United Nations Human Settlements Programme (UN–Habitat), and the United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime (UNODC), in partnership with the Ministry of Women’s Affairs and the Ministry of Social Development as well as other ministries and civil society organizations.