Preventing violence against women
Title: Preventing violence against women – PreViMujer
Commissioned by: German Federal Ministry for Economic Cooperation and Development (BMZ)
Lead executing agency: Ministry of the national development plan ‘An entire life’
Overall term: 2018 to 2020
Violence against women is regarded as normal and tolerated by large sections of Ecuadorian society. Despite progressive legislation to counter this problem, the statistics continue to be alarming: six out of every ten women in Ecuador are affected by violence. However, violence against women is not normal, but is instead one of the most widespread violations of human rights worldwide.
In early 2018, the Ecuadorian state enacted a new law protecting women against violence. In addition, preventing and combating violence against women is a priority area of action in Ecuador’s ‘Toda una vida’ national development plan (2017 to 2021). Ecuador has also ratified both the Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of Discrimination Against Women (CEDAW) and the Inter-American Convention on the Prevention, Punishment, and Eradication of Violence against Women (Convención Belém do Pará). The country has committed itself to achieving the United Nations’ Sustainable Development Goals, which include tackling violence against women and girls.
Despite this progress, it remains difficult to implement effective measures to prevent violence against women. To put a stop to violence, all sections of society must do their bit – after all, this is the only way to completely change attitudes and, as a result, bring about a permanent change in behaviour in society.
State actors, the private sector and civil society are making a greater contribution to preventing violence against women.
The project supports state institutions, private companies, universities and women’s rights organisations with their measures to prevent violence against women. For example, campaigns, studies and training events are carried out and information is disseminated. A national study on the issue of how to prevent violence against women at Ecuadorian universities was conducted with the aim of developing an organisational model for combating violence against women that has a solid scientific basis and is tailored to the specific structures at Ecuadorian universities.
There were also campaigns that focused on the participation of sportspersons, the media, the private sector, the National Assembly, students and women’s rights organisations, and that helped to change discriminatory and violent socio-cultural gender patterns.
This improves the exchange of experience and collaboration between institutions and fosters cooperation with the private sector. At the same time, the project is supporting the process of altering societal attitudes from acceptance to rejection of violence against women. Joint prevention measures have an impact both inside and outside of organisations.