PREVENTING VIOLENCE AGAINST WOMEN IN KAZAKHSTAN
The Government of Kazakhstan has just completed a ground-breaking study on the prevalence of violence against women in its country, and The Equality Institute is helping with the next phase.
For the second half of this year, we will be engaged by the Government of Kazakhstan to help with analysing the impressive 14,000 surveys conducted by the Committee for Statistics of the Ministry of National Economy, and for disseminating the data. The survey is the first of its kind to be conducted in Kazakhstan, and its findings have the potential to inform policy makers and promote widespread positive change across Kazakhstani communities.
With funding provided by the World Health Organization and UNWomen, we are helping the Kazakhstani Statistics Committee along with other public health organisations to build their capacity for analysing data on violence against women. Through assisting these bodies in reviewing the analyses, and supporting the Statistics Committee in preparing their final report, we are building a foundation on which these organisations can carry out similar work in the future. Our collaboration will occur over a series of 2–3 visits and ongoing remote support. The first visit consisted of a workshop conducted by our Research Associates Sarah Gosper and Sarah McCook earlier this year in May.
The Committee for Statistics is already very well versed in presenting descriptive statistics on public health issues. Our role is to provide a much more in-depth analytical insight into the data collected, a deeper understanding of what the data means compared with global statistics on violence against women, as well as assistance in presenting the data in an accessible way.
THE FIRST WORKSHOP
The workshop went for a day and a half and was conducted in three sessions. The first session was an overview of violence against women, its causes and drivers, and looked at violence against women as a very real issue that exists in every country.
The second session looked at in-depth data analysis and how this can be broken down into socio-economic categories and demographics. The session also looked at the prevalence of intimate partner violence and what works in violence prevention. Also presented was the role of holistic prevention initiatives in the context of achieving the Sustainable Development Goals, in building peace, and in achieving human rights and justice for all peoples.
The final session focussed on why and how to use statistics for advocacy, and how to present the data so it tells the story accurately and effectively, drawing on successful examples from all over the world. Importantly, our Research Associates worked with the Committee for Statistics on how the concept of gender equality and ending violence against women can be made more accessible to various audiences with the aim of changing mindsets and behaviour over the long term.
USING DATA FOR CHANGE
Workshop participants were particularly passionate about using the data to lobby for change. We hope that by working with the Statistics Committee we can create real and sustainable change in how gender equality is understood. The data gathered will give us an understanding of the situation and complexity of violence against women, allowing targeted measures, campaigns, and policies to be implemented to prevent it in Kazakhstan. The data will give advocates and other practitioners a tangible and evidentiary tool that they can use to hold their Government to action. We look forward to working with the Committee for Statistics over the coming months in order to achieve this.
A final report based on the data is due to be released for the 16 Days of Activism Campaign Against Gender Based Violence in November.