Case Study: Profamilia at Work to Address Violence against Women (Dominican Republic and Colombia)
In the Dominican Republic Profamilia has successfully increased awareness on violence against women and girls through outreach to media, women’s groups and communities. Efforts have also been made to increase knowledge on women’s rights. For example, in 1997 a law to increase the protection of violence, especially domestic violence against women and children was passed. Recognizing that this new legislation would mean very little if women did not know their rights, Profamilia took on the task of disseminating its contents. In order to explain the new law and the process for reporting violence, three different publications were compiled and disseminated. With the aim of reaching a wide audience, each publication was designed for populations with varying degrees of literacy (Population Council, 2006).
In Colombia, Profamilia maintains a strong role across the country in providing sexual and reproductive health services. An important part of their work focuses on addressing sexual violence. They provide integrated advisory, medical and psychosocial, legal and centres of attention and referral services to survivors. The organization has also launched a major campaign A Viva Voz mainly aimed at adolescents through the engagement of well-known pop stars and the use of multimedia.
Student Booklet on Sexual Violence (2007). Available in Spanish.
For more information about community-based prevention see community mobilization in the Prevention Module.
Intimate Partner and Sexual Violence Prevention Course (Violence and Injury Prevention and Disability/ World Health Organization). Available in English.
VicHealth Review of Communication Components of Social Marketing/Public Education Campaigns Focusing on Violence Against Women (Donovan and Vlais/RJD Consulting for ViCHealth, 2005). Available in English.
Making a Difference: Strategic Communication to End Violence against Women (UNIFEM, 2003b). Available in English.
How to Mobilize Communities for Health and Social Change (Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health Center for Communication Programs, 2003). Available in English.
GBV Prevention Network Communications Materials (Gender-based Violence Prevention Network). Materials available in a number of languages.
A Field Guide to Designing a Health Communication Strategy (JHU School of Public Health, Center for Communication Programs, 2003) provides general tips on how to construct a communications strategy that is not specific to violence against women, but provides a methodology that can be adapted. Available in English.
Gateway to Health Communication & Social Marketing Practice (Centers for Disease Control and Prevention). Available in English.