Boys Quarters Africa, a non-governmental organisation (NGO) focused on boy-child transformation, says it will collaborate with the Lagos government on re-orientation for boys and men on issues of gender-based violence.
The organisation will collaborate with the Lagos domestic and sexual violence agency on the ‘Project Sabi Initiative’, which will run for 18 months.
On Tuesday, a delegation of Boys Quarters Africa met with Titilola Vivour-Adeniyi, executive secretary of the Lagos domestic and sexual violence agency, in Lagos.
Speaking at the meeting, Solomon Ayodele, founder of Boys Quarters Africa, said the project, which is a collaboration with Oxfam-Voice and Connected Development (CODE), aims at educating boys from 30 schools across three states — Lagos, Enugu and Abuja.
He also added that the organisation plans to run a training programme for the National Union of Road Transport Workers (NURTW) to tackle gender-based violence across motor parks.
“Ignorance plays a major role when it comes to combatting gender-based violence, especially as it relates to men and boys. It’s easy to fix men, but it’s easier to build boys. For men, it could be just sheer ignorance because some of these things have been passed down culturally by their parents. Some of the things we know about consent today were things we were never taught. We believe that if you don’t educate, you cannot criticise. That’s why we are paying a lot of attention to education,” Ayodele said.
“We are not talking about mere education, but helping them realise how sexism and male dominance plays a huge role when it comes to violence against women and girls. It’s sitting them down to make them understand what they are doing and how that can affect the entire spectrum.
“Of course, powerplay has a lot to do with it, and part of what we’re going to be talking to them about is how they can manage powerplay; have them understand that masculinity is not equal to aggression. Some of these things are what we’ve imbibed from our cultures, and we need to be re-educated.”
At the end of the meeting, the Lagos agency agreed to work with Boys Quarters Africa on supporting the campaign against gender-based violence.