BY LORETTA BRIGIDIA MANELE
ON June 12, Koloale Primary School got first-hand information on gender based violence and the Family Protection Act (FPA) after an awareness activity was facilitated at the school by RSIPF Community Policing and Red Cardim Violence (RCV) Gender based Violence project.
This is according to Mr Golden Kiloko, the Country Programme Manager for Live and Learn, Red Cardim Violence (RCV) project.
He explained that students and staff were introduced to gender-based violence (GBV), its causes, the negative impacts it has on thousands of women, children in family circles and communities and ways to help reduce it at home and in the communities.
Kiloko added that they were also given a brief lesson about the Family Protection Act (FPA), in which they were enlightened about the act, what it provides and how an individual can be susceptible of facing prosecution with heavy penalties and imprisonment if caught in an act of violence.
“Family Protection Act was also highlighted during the awareness, which is now known and become a law in the country, and anyone caught in act of violence, will be prosecuted with heavy penalties and imprisonment.
“The awareness was on Family Protection Act, it is an act to provide for the protection of families from domestic violence and to promote the safety, health and wellbeing victims of domestic violence and for related purposes,” he said.
Kiloko said that the awareness activity is not only the first of its kind for the school but one that sparked an interest for more information especially from some of the teachers.
“Some of the teachers admitted that they were victims of domestic violence and are eager to learn more,” he said.
Kiloko said that students were also urged to share what they have learned with their parents and communities.
He expressed that lessons learnt from the activity are; teachers and students who experienced violence at home and in school were eager to learn more about issues of violence and the FPA, students were of a good age group to learn about gender based violence given the positive impact it will have on them as they grow into adults and whilst the GBV issue is still widespread in the country, community policing, teachers and students have acknowledged that strong Christian faith will ease the challenges of gender-based violence in Solomon Islands.
“Although the issue of GBV is still rife in Solomon Islands, the Community Policing, Teachers and students have acknowledge that having a strong relationship in Jesus will ease this challenge of GBV in Solomon Islands.
“In overall, the awareness was good as teachers and students have heard and got firsthand information from the facilitators on the violence and its different forms, its causes which have affected women, girls and children in our family and our communities and ways to reduce violence,” Kiloko said.