Men playing an active role in addressing issues on gender equality and GBV in Insiza.
Insiza Ward 20 Male Champions have become agents of change in transforming societal norms towards ending Gender Based violence. One of the male champions Senzeni Moyo (not real name) was quoted saying “… before I gained knowledge on how to resolve conflict, I used to be violent towards my wife when we had misunderstandings. I learnt to resolve matters without using violence and I now lead a peaceful life.”. Sifelani has become a role model to other community members. He has been able to engage other men in his village on GBV related matters and they appreciate the knowledge. Further, Male champions in conjunction with Community Based Counsellors have held community dialogues on how GBV is both a cause and consequence HIV.
They highlighted that the meetings they conduct are a learning curve for them as one of them was quoted saying “ through engaging men in my village I have realised that unequal power relations in decision making puts women at risk of contracting HIV as they are unable to make decisions regarding their own bodies”. Therefore, male champions are engaging their peers on the importance of Sexual Reproductive Health Rights of both men and women as a means to end violence amongst their partners. Male champions also portrayed problem solving skills with regards to issues that arise during their engagements. the male champions use exchange visits with other male champions from neighbouring villages as they believe this has more effect of driving the message home, when messages come from “outsiders.” The exchange visits among villages are effective and offer diversity and sharing of ideas on best practices in male engagement.