Spotlight Initiative has supported over 225,562 Liberian women and girls to access a wide range of services in Liberia. These are areas in health, justice, protection, psychosocial and economic support.
The initiative is working with some 300 traditional practitioners of FGM also known as Zoes, to engage in socioeconomic livelihood projects including climate-smart agriculture and Village Savings and Loans Associations for income generation and economic security as a substitute to practicing FGM for income.
The work with the Zoes also incorporated the construction of four vocational and heritage centres for sustaining positive traditions and cultures while serving as training grounds for women and girls in self-sustenance skills. Spotlight Initiative was also instrumental in the UN’s COVID-19 country response.
We remain immensely grateful to the European Union for it’s very generous funding support. The results of the Initiative are, of course, also possible with the support and guidance of the Government of the Republic of Liberia which continues to tangibly demonstrate its commitment to ending violence against women and girls.
The Government of Liberia has among other efforts allocated USD 380,000 in the draft FY 2022 National Budget to help mainstream gender-responsive planning and budgeting in nine ministries. We recognize leadership and coordination role of the Ministry of Gender, Children and Social Protection in designing national commitments towards elimination of violence within the National Anti GBV Roadmap (2020-2022) that represents a guiding tool for the Government to coordinate, integrate and drive change and foster accountability for prevention and response.
We also recognise and are grateful for the commitment and support of Liberia Civil Society organizations and Civil Society National Reference Group members, county based CSO Secretariats, the National Council of Traditional Chiefs and Elders, grassroots women organizations, the media and all our national partners towards the Initiative.
Through monitoring and evaluation of the Initiative and consultative meetings with stakeholders, we continue to learn and improve the objectives, partnerships, and sustainability of the Spotlight Initiative in Liberia. I hope you will join us in doing so. The women and girls of Liberia will expect our collective progress in contributing to such a vital part of Liberia’s development.
The Spotlight Initiative will continue to strive towards a violence-free Liberia for women and girls and to achieve Sustainable Development Goal Five (SDG5) for gender equality.
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