In order to promote gender equality and women’s equal enjoyment of human rights, SAHAYOG works with men and boys as responsible partners in encouraging social change and securing a violence-free life for all. Since unequal gender relations are upheld by various institutions, programme interventions go beyond behaviour change strategies into transforming institutions themselves.
From 2003 to 2012, SAHAYOG’s work with men has included the following activities:
- SAHAYOG hosted the secretariat of the Men’s Action for Stopping Violence Against Women (MASVAW) network.
- Interventions with academic institutions to address gender-based violence on campus.
- Interventions on male migration in the context of HIV/AIDS
Perhaps the only resource centre that supports work with men and boys in different states of India as well as across South Asia, SAHAYOG has been providing training to a wide range of people, including teachers, health providers, youth, media persons and NGO workers, over the last five years on diverse topics.
Through SAHAYOG’s programs in schools, colleges and universities youth are encouraged to debate, paint, discuss films and engage with other youth and men towards building a deeper understanding of the issues of VAW and gender inequality. These have proved immensely popular all over Uttar Pradesh and there is ever-increasing demand for seminars and workshops with the students. SAHAYOG has a body of resource materials such as posters, games, flash-card sets, an activity book and films for interactive sessions with young men and boys. SAHAYOG has also developed modules for teachers to use for creating awareness in school children, and a set of training session plans for gender trainings with men.
In 2007, SAHAYOG carried out a study titled Men Beyond Bridges on the issue of gender, masculinities and HIV/AIDS in the context of male migration in the eastern region of Uttar Pradesh. The report of the findings were used to create training modules and educational materials in Hindi for migration preparedness. This is a departure from conventional HIV prevention material in that it highlights the complex nature of negotiating safe sex within heterosexual or male-to-male interactions, occurring either with or without consent. SAHAYOG has conducted a capacity building workshop using the Training Module, in which participants were enabled to understand HIV in the context of gendered and multiple vulnerabilities. The posters, stickers, flash-card set, illustrated story and FAQ booklet specifically focused on the needs of young men and boys who are likely to migrate to large cities. These resources helped to prepare young male migrants in eastern Uttar Pradesh with information on risk-taking behavior, and promote gender equitable and responsible relationships for the prevention of HIV/AIDS.