Last week Sini Sanuman officially opened its reintegration centre in Bamako.After countless hours of searching for a suitable location and qualified trainers, assembling beds and setting up sewing machines, the centre finally welcomed its beneficiaries, thirty women survivors of sexual and gender-based violence, for the first full day of training. The women immediately began their recuperation with the help of psycho-social treatment and skills training.
Though Sini Sanuman did encounter a few challenges along its path, its programme in Mali’s capital is now also well underway. The drive of Sini Sanuman’s staff is heartwarming, and it also thanks to them that the atmosphere at the centre felt comfortable right away. The centre hosts more than 30 people during the day with the possibility of hosting up to 5 people per night. Although the programme was originally designed to have women stay overnight for a month in order to recuperate away from family obligations, it quickly became clear that culture and customs would not allow it. It simply would not be possible for women to leave their families for a month, so Sini Sanuman decided to offer lodging to those who request it or need it
The centre is aimed at both the social and economic reintegration of the beneficiaries through social and psychological help as well as skills training. The first day involved mainly the beginning of sewing and embroidery trainings. These trainings will help women become more financially independent in the long run, but they also have the power to instill confidence and make women regain their self-appreciation in the short term.
The next four months will undoubtedly show us what works best, and what might need to change, but for now I think that it is important to make sure women get the support they need from Sini Sanuman’s psycho-social services and from the trainings, both in Bamako and in Bourem.
Posted By Giorgia Nicatore
Posted Sep 5th, 2014