December Issue 2014

Page 36

The mission of Sister Somalia is not only to respond to the rampant issue of sexual violence but to put in place sustainable measures to prevent such violence from reoccurring and have the center serve as a platform to realize just that. Sister Somalia focuses on the empowerment of survivors, cultivating leadership and developing them into ambassadors for change; transforming them from victims to victors. When such mechanisms are in place, the center is entrusted to a group of survivors over seen by senior staff from the organization; and the Sister Somalia team moves on to a new acute area; and strives to achieve similar success and continue to move forward; until every rural and urban area alike can respond and prevent the pervasive violence against women from continuing on at the community level. A typical day at the Sister Somalia centers varies depending on the region, and although emergency services are provided in house, there are other longer term developmental services we also offer the following services to the survivors of violence.

1) Women and girls learning skills, with practical and theoretical skills training sessions on going as a means of equipping survivors with a vocational trade skill to enter the work force with. 2) Survivors learning financial literacy, business management and receiving grants to start their own businesses as a means of not only rebuilding their lives post-trauma and violence, but reclaiming their lives. 3) Conversations on the past, the future, dreams and aspirations over tea and finger foods in any of the common areas in the centers. 4) Group or individual counseling sessions in a warm, inviting atmosphere.