The Catholic Church Pledged Support and Partnership to Fight Gender Based Violence

The Catholic Church has pledged strong partnership and support to fight against Gender Based Violence (GBV) which threatens family stability and undermines the society’s development.

The pledge was made Thursday last week during a high level dialogue with Catholic senior leaders and priests organized by the Gender Monitoring Office in partnership with development partners to discuss on the role of Catholic Church in fighting against Gender Based Violence and promoting gender equality.

The high level dialogue was organized in the margins of the National Catholic Youth Forum that convened in Rubavu District from 7th - 10th December 2017 and brought together more than 5000 youth from across the country.

Speaking at the meeting, the Bishop of Nyundo Diocese Dr. Father Anaclet Myumvaneza said Gender Based Violence destabilizes the community, and prevents the society from enjoying their rights and peace. He also emphasized that GBV prevents people especially youth from realizing their dreams.

“The catholic church has always worked with the government to improve community livelihood through different mechanisms and initiatives. We shall keep working together for this aim and also to fight gender based violence and promote equality between men and women, which promotes better community”, said Dr. Father Myumvaneza

‘‘We shall also keep mobilizing and working with the community especially youth to uphold the moral values, which is key to preventing gender based violence in the Rwandan community” added the Father.

The Chief Gender Monitor Rose Rwabuhihi said that the meeting was organized as a platform to discuss and share experiences on GBV issues affecting the community and youth in particular, and also discuss on strategic mechanisms for collective partnership to prevent and responding to this vice.

The Chief Gender Monitor called on the Catholic Church to fight the teenage pregnancy, family conflicts, human trafficking and other forms of GBV persisting in the community.

‘‘These teenagers that are impregnated were to be future leaders of this country, doctors and so on. But after facing this issue, their dreams are not realized. We all have to ensure teenage pregnancy is curbed,’’ said the Chief Gender Monitor.

The Minister of Gender and Family Promotion Esperance Nyirasafari, who was also present at the dialogue, commended the existing partnership between the Catholic Church and the Government and  loaded the contribution of the Catholic Church in building the Rwandan society through different existing initiatives and mechanisms across the country. She reiterated fighting gender based violence is a shared responsibility which requires contribution of all actors including religious and Faith Based Organizations.

The Minister further requested the Catholic Church to always discuss issues of Gender Based Violence with their believers in their respective gatherings across the country.

The Gender Monitoring Office has been establishing partnership with different actors at all levels for fighting gender based violence and especially responding to gender based violence and support its victims.