Working with women

One workshop from one of three program units (psychological empowerment, creative, health and workshops based on cultural differences) is once a week realized with women from different countries in the Asylum Centers, Banja Koviljaca and Bogovadja.

Through psychological empowerment workshops participants are dealing with the concepts such as identity and group membership, trust-building, communication, ways to respond to conflict situations, partner violence, recognition and expression of emotions.

Workshop based on cultural differences are directed on two levels - one is to inform and compare customs, daily life and the position of women in countries from which asylum seekers are coming from, Serbia and the western and northern Europe. The second level is related to the understanding of cultural factors and levels of adjustment to the new culture where participants are encouraged to research and have a constructive approach to the community in which they are going.

Health topics such as identification and transmission of skin infections, personal hygiene, conditions during the journey, the changed conditions of coexistence with a large number of people, hygiene education for children, healthy balanced diet, menstrual cycle and sexually transmitted diseases are presented and discussed either through form of workshops or interactive lectures with the use of video and printed working materials.

Women also take part in creative workshops with henna painting, which is very popular in Afghanistan.

A large percentage of women are completely uneducated and this is the first structured form of activities in which they participate. Also, new approach in which the participants are expected to present their opinion and discuss with other women gradually becomes closer to the women who are coming from Afghanistan and Somalia. An important component of the workshops is to establish a dialogue and tolerance for coexistence between people from different countries.

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