The “Preventing peer, gender-based and sexual violence in primary schools” project, which was implemented in six schools in Bosnia and Herzegovina, was successfully completed. The project, implemented by the NGO Genesis Project from Banja Luka, under the auspices of the Canada Fund for Local Initiatives, included six primary schools, one primary school from the following municipalities: Banja Luka, Slatina, Sanski Most, Fajtovci and two primary schools from the Brčko District.
Through the project a total of 56 workshops were carried out with the pupils, which included 90 pupils and the trainings for the teachers were attended by 114 teachers.
According to Draško Stojčević, a project coordinator, the end result of the project activities is the increased capacity of the schools to recognize and respond to violence.
“For example, in the schools covered by the project, we formed the groups of the peer supporters who would cover the topicsregarding bullying with other primary school pupils and hopefully thus continue to raise awareness of the need for good communication, peaceful conflict resolution and violence prevention,” explained Stojčević.
He also pointed out that the teachers who attended the training got new knowledge about communication, peaceful conflict resolution and violence prevention.
“Those teachers will be able to better implement the activities designed in relation to these topics, and through the system of the Confidence box placed in the primary schools the process of reporting cases of peer violence will be enhanced,” said Stojčević.
According to him, the project was successfully implemented andthe pupils involved in the project had the increased awareness about the need to prevent the violence happening and about peaceful and responsible resolution of conflicts.
“Neverthelessit is necessary to continue educating the pupils and the teachers on peer violence in schools in order to bring the cases of peer, gender-based and sexual violence to a minimum. Considering the frequent occurrence of peer violence we believe that it is necessary to implement these projects in a larger number of schools,” said Stojčević.
The Genesis Project accentuates that in cooperation with the “9th Primary School” in Brčko, they came up with the idea to organize some kind of award prizes for the pupils who work on the promotion of the peaceful conflict resolution and prevention of violence in schools.
“We hope that this will also be one of the measures that will stimulate the pupils to behave more responsibly when it comes to peaceful resolution of conflict,” added Draško Stojčević.
The “Preventing peer, gender-based and sexual violence in primary schools” project began with the implementation in November 2015. Its main goal, which has been achieved, was to provide the teachers and the children with the right tools, knowledge and skills to enable them to actively participate in the establishment of the effective responses to the risks that accompany bullying, gender-based and sexual violence. The project results are the high-quality databases of attitudes, perceptions and knowledge about violence available for planning the actions in schools and local communities, increased school capacity to recognize and respond to violence and the mechanisms for monitoring the occurrence of violence, formed at the school level.