The Sister Guardian Initiative (SGI) is a South Saharan Social Development Organization’s flagship on reducing violence against women at the community level. The Sister Guardian Initiative, which is currently implemented in 19 communities in Enugu and Anambra State taps into existing community-based women groups to identify women, referred to as Sister Guardians (SG), who are willing to stand in the gap and advocate for other women facing different kinds of abuse. They are majorly drawn from the circle of influential women in the community for instance: the Traditional rulers’ wives, Political women leaders, Religious women leaders, Umuada women leaders, Market women leaders etc.
These SGs provide the immediate support to female victims of violence – safety, counseling, mediation with the husband and family members and when it is necessary for the cases to be referred to the police and other relevant agencies for the women, they support the women in prosecuting their case either at the community level with the extended family and village authorities, or the police and courts as the case may be, ensuring the women are never alone. In addition, they advocate against violence against women (VAW) at the community level and also educate women and the community at large on their civic responsibilities.
Beyond combating gender-based violence, one goal of the Sister Guardian Initiative is to build a strong women executive that wields enough influence to advocate and adjudicate for women’s rights in the community.
To achieve unity and cohesion among the team members, it is important to also support each other in their grieving times.
South Saharan Social Development Organization financially supported the members of a bereaved family who lost their wife and mother, who is a member of the Sister Guardian community in Orokoro community. The initiative was also able to support a family in Eke community as well.
Our thoughts and prayers are with the families in this trying time.