‘We Can’ Campaign Approach
The campaign’s model of change is unique. It is centered on individuals addressing structural gender inequalities.
It involves large numbers of people and organisations to oppose violence against women through large scale public awareness programmes and empathy for the issue.
The emphasis is on people and personal change.‘We Can’ builds on the belief that people change when they recognise something as their own problem, and feel both that another way is possible, and that they themselves are capable of taking it.
It, hence, strongly promotes the positive message that violence is neither acceptable nor inevitable, and that ordinary women and men have the capacity to end it.
By focusing on personal change, it taps into people’s self-interest, and also puts the possibility of solutions at a level that they can influence themselves.
The value of the campaign lies in the genuine understanding and commitment to personal change that it can trigger in ordinary women and men; the aim is to spark such authentic change in the widest possible number.
Change Makers actively aid in this process. They do not offer readymade solutions. Instead they raise awareness on the issue through personal interaction and the communication aids they are provided with, extend information about support services and networks and offer the campaign identity as aids for change.
People (students, housewives, teachers, doctors, nurses, lawyers, businessmen, policy makers, religious groups and rural populations, among others) are encouraged to find their own solutions to violence in their lives and within their community, make their own choices, and carry it forward at the pace they determine.
The emphasis is on engaging critical thinking and engagement of people and the perpetrators and not on putting them on the defensive by ‘naming and shaming’.
The campaign, hence, only provides the stimulus and encouragement to people to live up to their own moral aspirations. Once someone embarks on that course, it is then in their interest to raise awareness in others in order to garner support for their own change process.
The campaign also provides a common platform for discrete individuals and organisations making efforts to empower women facing violence in the six countries.
While each of the campaign allies responds in their own manner to the unique social, cultural, political and economic environments and have different focus areas, they are all bound by their commitment to the long-term and sustained process of the campaign to change social attitudes on violence against women.
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