Churches and religious organizations unite to counter domestic violence in Ukraine
Churches and religious organizations will develop a joint communication strategy aimed at preventing and countering domestic violence in Ukraine.
The launch meeting of the project, which will unite the efforts of religious figures and specialists in various fields, was held in Kyiv on July 15, IRS reports.
Representatives of different faiths supported the project of the Institute for Religious Freedom, which will help the religious community to communicate more effectively and professionally with society, both believers and laypeople, to encourage and train them to solve domestic conflicts without violence, in love and with mutual respect.
Archbishop Yevstratiy, Deputy Head of the Department for External Church Relations of the Orthodox Church of Ukraine, states:
“Ukrainian Churches, in particular the All-Ukraine Council of Churches and Religious Organizations, have been actively engaging in public discussions on domestic violence for many years. Unfortunately, we see that international conventions do not consider the primary causes of domestic violence, such as alcoholism. Therefore, we see the prospect of a more comprehensive approach to this issue in this project.
The project provides for the creation of a thematic website that will become an information resource highlighting the reaction of the religious community to the problem of domestic violence. Along with educational materials and recommendations from a psychologist, users of the site will be able to learn about positive practices of various faiths aimed at preventing domestic violence and providing practical assistance to victims.
The website will also be useful for local communities, government representatives and donor organizations, which will be able to attract the great potential of religious organizations in countering domestic violence.
Oleksandr Zayets, Chairman of the IRS Board, Project Lead, underscores:
“This project is intended to create a space for an honest discussion of the problem of domestic violence and practical responses to this challenge.
According to the National Police of Ukraine for 2018, the number of requests with reports of domestic violence exceeded 110 thousand, of which 1418 came from children. However, throughout 2019, the total number of reports on domestic violence cases has already increased by 30% – to 141 thousand. And this is only recorded data, and the actual number of victims of domestic violence can be ten times higher, as experts estimate, especially during the quarantine due to the COVID-19 pandemic.”