Violence prevention in Haiti: empowerment through respect

“People accept violence without even realizing they are victims or perpetrators. Violence is trivialized, and the cycle takes hold. We end up believing that certain people deserve it, and we find excuses to justify it…” Max Renaud Lubin, Senior Coordinator, Violence Prevention Program, Haitian Red Cross

After the 2010 earthquake, a number of assessments revealed  violence, especially sexual violence, represented a major humanitarian threat in displaced persons camps. The risk was highest for women and children – both boys and girls. The need for violence prevention programs was clear.

The Red Cross’ anti-violence initiatives have targeted mainly youth and women through community activities, partnerships with local organizations, and training in Port-au-Prince, Jacmel, Leogane and Les Nippes. The Haïti en Scène project is an example of how the Red Cross works to provide people with the tools they need to prevent and protect themselves from violence.

This local initiative was implemented in 10 displaced persons camps and supported by both the Canadian and French Red Cross. The project is based on a psychosocial approach that enables youth to learn skills while connecting with others, and uses discussion, theatre, sports and engagement activities.

Key facts and figures
  • More than 420,000 people were reached through violence and abuse prevention programs.
  • Support was provided to Fanm Deside (Committed Women) to promote the rights of women and young girls in three communes.
  • The Haïti en Scène project offered forums, sports activities, and dance, theatre and music workshops for children and teenagers living in displaced persons camps.
  • The À l’écoute (Active Listening) project involved listening to children and youth about their vision of violence prevention.
  • Training on safety and violence prevention was held within the Haitian Red Cross.
  • Support and capacity building was provided to 125 teachers in 43 schools.
  • Red Cross community facilitators conducted violence prevention activities, reaching thousands of households per month as part of the community healthcare program.
  • Radio broadcasts were held on violence prevention and non-violent conflict resolution.
Learn more about our action in Haiti.