It is a training toolkit to build or improve the practitioners’ know-how and skills for supporting women in an effort to increase their social and economic empowerment with the goal of becoming self-sufficient in order to live a life free from intimate partner violence. The toolkit provides methodologies and tools that can be adopted or embedded in existing working practices, enhancing their effectiveness with no additional burden.
The toolkit is primarily intended for practitioners working in anti-violence centres and assisting women affected by intimate partner violence, namely social workers, psychologists, counsellors, job counsellors, and other professionals working directly with IPV survivors.
The toolkit comprises five modules that provide step-by-step guidance from the selection of trainees to the building of the trainees’ team, the empowerment process, and the training evaluation. It covers different stages of the women’s social and economic empowerment by offering a comprehensive set of activities and tools both for group and individual sessions.
The trainers can customise the training by combining the sessions and the tools according to the needs of both the individual trainees and of the group.
Each module has its own objective(s) as follows:
- MODULE 1: Trainees’ Selection
- To identify the trainees through the assessment of their personal and professional needs and commitments.
- MODULE 2: Team Building and Individual Commitments
- To know one another and support the building of a committed, motivated, trustworthy, and inclusive group with shared rules and responsibilities.
- MODULE 3: Empowerment: Me, Myself, and I
- To support the individual detection and acknowledgement of inner resources and the development of key personal skills in view of the job searching process.
- MODULE 4: Empowerment: My Skills and Job Searching
- To develop professional skills and job searching techniques to find employment opportunities.
- MODULE 5: Looking Back to Go Forward
- To collectively assess the training performance and results against the initial goals to also identify room for improvements.
Between 2015 and 2017, the European Union funded the WE GO! (Women Economic independence & Growth Opportunity) project to strengthen the activities provided by AVCs to economically empower women experiencing or who experienced IPV. The project built on the know-how and promising practices developed by European AVCs to be valued, exchanged and systematized in order to share and strengthen them throughout Europe. The Training Toolkit was the main output of the WE GO! project resulting from thorough exchanges and testing process carried out by practitioners and experts of both partner and external organisations with a common goal: to provide AVCs operators with methodologies and tools to support the personal and economic empowerment of women they assist in their daily work.
The second edition of WE GO! (2018-2020) takes a further step up, aiming to support the economic empowerment of women who survived violence by strengthening the local and national support systems, exchanging European good practices and establishing cooperation networks between private and public stakeholders. In this framework, the Training Toolkit has been revised to include the learning of its further implementation. This edition of the WE GO! Training Toolkit has been restructured and enriched to be a user-friendly tool and a living document complemented by the readings uploaded in the project website’s repository for further insights.
The project partners believe that this product can serve multi-purposes: to provide AVCs operators with new and much needed working tools to aptly perform their job; to support women in achieving their economic independence to break free from IPV; and to urge policy makers and all concerned actors to fully ensure that economic empowerment is embedded in all policies and interventions they design and implement to prevent gender-based violence and to provide support to women experiencing IPV. In order to transform these goals into concrete actions, the WE GO! Toolkit needs to widely circulate and be adopted, also with the support of its readers.