The WARIF Educational School Program (WESP) Initiative is a preventive initiative carried out by the Women At Risk International Foundation WARIF, which commenced in May, 2017. This school educational program consists of two phases.
With the approval of the Lagos State Ministry of Education, in Nigeria; over the first Quarter of 2017 the WARIF foundation embarked on a baseline survey of the prevalence of cases of sexual abuse and violence among adolescent school children in our communities and the existing patterns of behavior of the adolescent boy and girl child between the ages of 13 and 16 years of age.
10 public secondary (or elementary) schools were selected from the School District IV, between secondary school level SS1 – SS2 and over 1000 questionnaires were distributed by qualified WARIF facilitators.
In June of 2017, the research from the baseline survey was analyzed and assisted in the implementation of an intervention strategy, the WESP initiative Phase II consisting of activities and tutorials tackling Gender Based Violence and the issues that surrounds this was introduced into the selected schools in the District IV school district in Lagos State.
The 4 week program comprising of weekly sessions from a curriculum specifically designed was carried out by trained WARIF facilitators with sessions arranged with the school-children, teachers and parents/care-givers at the selected schools.
This resulting increased awareness, knowledge and behavioral change achieved by this intervention will help reduce the gender inequality that currently exists as a result of the cultural, social and political norms in our environment and will lead to a decrease in the incidence of gender based violence which is very likely to occur as these adolescents reach adulthood.