#National News

GAMCOTRAP certifies 100 educators for change

Mar 9, 2021, 11:32 AM | Article By: Pa Modou Cham

The Gambia Committee on Traditional Practices Affecting the Health of Women and Children (GAMCOTRAP) recently unveiled and certificated its first cohort of 100 trainees comprising both boys and girls, who are expected to fight and advocate against violence against women and girls.

The event held at the President’s International Award (PIA) on Sunday, was designed to train the participants who will in turn advocate to bring about positive change in their respective communities.

GAMCOTRAP executive director Princess Adine MunaHot explained that the boys and girls would be ambassadors and educators for change, adding that a lot of efforts have been invested towards the eradication of harmful practices such as FGM, child and forced marriages and other gross violations of women and girls’ rights.

“The initiative of both boys and girls will bring positive impact which will be instrumental. GAMCOTRAP cohort, is an advocacy group aged 15 years and below that came together to amplify the voices of children as victim of violations to impact change, create awareness on a more robot skills, involve other boys and girls on gender related issues, collaborated on the larger scale with key actors against all forms of violations against girls and women, to represent girls on all platforms both locally and internationally on children rights and the need to end FGM,” she stated.

She indicated that GAMCOTRAP has engaged all stakeholders responsible of all violations and had trained them to become advocators for change.

“Knowledge, attitude and behavioural change of an entire nation requires constant efforts, innovated plans and collaborative efforts.”

She revealed that over 76% of all women and girls have undergone FGM in The Gambia, saying the practice is rooted in gender inequality and trying to control women sexuality and ideas.

Dwelling on the vex issue of child marriage, she maintained that the practice is a gross violation of children rights, which she added, involved unethically united people, who do not understand the responsibility behind the phenomenon.

“When economic crises emerge, girls are used as traders and get them married early without their consent or choice. With the advent of the ongoing covid-19 pandemic, there is increased sexual and gender-based violence. Alongside the increased in number, violation against women and girls has taken a new complicity,” she further said.

The ceremony was characterised with a drama performance and poetry performed by children from different schools all designed to end all forms of violence against women and girls.