The Australian Government through the Australian Embassy Direct Aid Program generously supported ‘Claim Your Rights’ training for 1,866 teenage girls in rural Ubon Ratchathani, providing them with the information and skills they need to recognize and report crimes against them, avoid dangerous situations, and respond sensibly in times of threat. This training was run in schools in the Ubon Ratchathani region through either a 3-hour workshop or a Mobile Knowledge Booth.
- By reaching over 1,800 girls with this training, these girls will start to think about their rights and challenge their situation in the world.
- They will start to think differently about people who act in a damaging way towards them and they will feel empowered to seek help and report criminal acts if they need to.
- They will encourage their friends and family to do the same.
- Even if they do not remember everything they learned in training, they will have gained a new sense of awareness about the laws and procedures in place to support them. As a result, they gain confidence in their own ability to deal with and navigate the world around them.
- Therefore we hope that they will be less likely to fall into dangerous situations, less likely to put up with damaging behavior and more likely to report crimes.
- Given the low reporting rate of crimes like rape and domestic assault in Thailand, this is a very important attitude to develop.
For the Foundation, the chance to develop and trial the Mobile Knowledge Booth concept provided a new tool in our training package, which will allow us to reach as many rural girls as we can each year. It enables us to sidestep an obstacle we often face when scheduling workshops with schools and to offer a booth instead.
We are now developing a second booth for our careers training in schools, which will follow a similar model. We are also considering possibilities for adapting this booth to take to villages and communities. Therefore, the long term impact of this project is that Pratthanadee will be able to reach significantly more girls than it would otherwise and, given that 84% of the girls we train are keen to share the information with their friends and family, we hope this will create a snowball effect. This will gradually result in changing societal attitudes about the acceptability of violence against women and girls, as an increased numbers of women and girls report crimes against them and seek the help they need.