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UN WOMEN KIRIBATI

WHAT: In Kiribati, the Ministry of Women, Youth, and Social Affairs (MWYSA) of the Government is implementing the Strengthening Peaceful Villages programme in South Tarawa, with sustained operational and technical assistance from UN Women. The SPV programme will adapt elements of the SASA! intervention, an evidence-based community mobilisation programme that aims to prevent intimate partner violence (IPV), originally developed in Uganda and now adapted for many countries around the world.

The EQI is conducting an impact evaluation to assess the effectiveness of the SPV programme in reducing rates of IPV in the target population, and to identify key lessons for what works to adapt the SASA! intervention framework to the Pacific context. Further to this, the evaluation will assess the effect of the SPV programme on community-level attitudes around IPV, men’s use of controlling behaviours in intimate relationships, women’s ability to negotiate sex within marriage, and community beliefs on family dynamics and parenting practices.

WHO: Over the life of the project we will conduct research with up to 5000 men and women in Kiribati, while also working closely with the government, civil society and then United Nations.

HOW: The impact evaluation study uses a quasi-experimental mixed methods design, incorporating quantitative baseline and endline surveys with qualitative components over the course of the SPV programme.

WHY: This project will have significant impacts at multiple levels. The programme aims to reduce rates of violence against women and the evaluation will document this to help government, civil society and the UN to implement more effective policies and programs in the future. 

It will also have a significant impact by contributing the global evidence base on what works to prevent violence against women in low-resource, high-prevalence settings. Kiribati is a low-income country and one of the least developed Pacific Island nations, with a high prevalence of violence against women. This setting is under-researched in the primary prevention field. The disparate geographical nature of the islands in the Pacific, as in other parts of the world, makes comprehensive service provision for survivors difficult. Therefore, primary prevention interventions to reduce rates of violence are needed more than ever. This research will contribute to the evidence base on what works to address the drivers of violence against women in a complex, high-priority setting. Data from this impact evaluation will advance efforts to prevent violence against women in Kiribati and contribute to improved prevention strategies across the Pacific region.