“After three days in prison he bought his freedom and got out.”
Lizzy, Juarez, Mexico

The Support Person

“Those four months changed my life.”


Who:
Paulina Bengtson
What:
Runs Novahuset, a voluntary association which supports victims of sexual assault.

“Actually, I had a feeling straight away that something was wrong. He looked like someone from the Mafia, not at all as gentle as he’d seemed. But I was gullible and ignored my own warning signals. I was used to trusting people.”


The Youth Leader

“Partner violence in Santa Marta has not disappeared, but it is no longer hidden away.”


Who:
Itamar Silva
What:
Runs a project to raise equality awareness in the Grupo Eco youth group in the Santa Marta favela.


The Activist

“We lesbians are not seen as either women or men.”


Who
: Kunu Semake
What:
Works for the Lesbian and Gay Equality Project, and runs her own youth club.


The Lawyers

“With armed guards for protection.”


Who:
Hina Jilani and Asma Jahangir
What:
As lawyers, they pursue questions relating to women’s human rights.


The Police Commissioner

“The turning point was 2004, with the new law on violence in the home. Violence against women was no longer a private matter.”


Who
: Adolfina Prieto
What: Heads LIBRA, the special police unit which combats violence against women and also offers survival courses to women who have lived with a dangerous man.


The Plastic Surgeon

“First it’s about saving lives. Then we can start to repair.”   


Who
: Muhammad Mughese Amin
What:
Operates on victims of honour crimes who have been burned by acid or mutilated.


The Women’s Shelter

“Several women who have stayed at Dastak have been murdered by their families when they have dared to venture out.”


Who:
Dastak shelter
What:
Offer protection to women who have been subjected to violence or threats of violence. Lahore’s only private women’s shelter.


The Pioneers

“As far as the politicians are concerned, it’s a reality that doesn’t exist.”


Who:
Casa Amiga
What: Centre for support and advice for women who have been subjected to violence.

She was a retired accountant who settled in Juarez where, in 1993, she began to notice the many reports in the local paper of young girls who had been found murdered and raped. Why was this spate of murders not attracting any attention?


Transit and Safety House

The women are so keen to learn.”


Who:
Maison Dorcas
What:
Help Panzi Hospital’s patients who have been the victims of violence to make the transition back into society.


The Therapist

Is your family more important than you yourself?


Who:
Maria Cristina D’Almeida Marques
What:
Runs group therapy sessions and offers counselling to abused women.

“Someone who lives in a violent relationship loses track of time and appointments – in fact, of everything that’s going on around her,” says therapist Maria Cristina D’Almeida Marques. “A woman who is the victim of violence focuses on the man and his demands.”


The School for Fathers

“The most important thing is that the men don’t need to feel they are alone with their questions, feelings and expectations.”


Who:
Sergey Zakharow
What: Child psychologist who holds courses for fathers-to-be.