The Duty Bearer’s Companion: A MIFUMI domestic violence training manual
The Duty Bearer’s Companion is the first comprehensive training manual on domestic violence produced by MIFUMI. It draws its key guiding values and principles of a survivor-centric service from the Women’s Aid movement and from the Duluth model of community responsibility for the burden of violence and holding offenders accountable. This is the introductory section that deals with basic information on domestic violence. It addresses definitions of domestic violence, its effects, impact, consequences and finally the process of helping a woman through the process of risk assessment and safety planning. The Companion can be used as a tool by caseworkers or anyone interested in ending abuse against women as it provides information on key services for women and on the impacts of domestic abuse. It provides the necessary training on how to receive survivors of domestic violence and help them seek justice. This companion has a specialist section on the harmful practice of Bride Price and is known to be the only training manual that offers training in this field.
Based on years of experience from the MIFUMI survivor shelters and advice centres, we understand that survivor-centres are often the first port of call for many women who suffer abuse and therefore this manual provides the adequate procedures needed for caseworkers and legal officers to help women in their journey to empowerment and a life free of violence. This companion presents well-researched and internationally accepted standards on domestic violence training.
It has been of great importance for MIFUMI to produce this body of work because of its unique position as a grassroots woman-centred and home grown agency that understands the context in which women and girls negotiate strategies to resist violence.
Who is the manual aimed at?
Throughout this manual, reference is made to Independent Domestic Violence Advisors (IDVAs). These are women in the community who work as volunteers at Advice Centres offering counselling support to women. In addition, all professionals and practitioners working in the field of violence against women and indeed women’s equality and development will find this useful.
Professor Ravi Thiara is an Associate Professor in Sociology at the University of Warwick, UK and was previously Director of the Centre for the Study of Safety and Well-being (SWELL), a centre specialising in research on violence against women and children (VAWC) and on marginalised communities. Exploring and theorising the intersection of major social divisions is central to her work. She is a highly experienced and respected researcher who has conducted extensive research at national and international level, with a particular focus on violence against women and children. This includes research in Uganda. Ravi has a particular expertise in gendered violence and black and minority communities and has worked with many women’s organisations, providing much needed evidence to improve policy and practice. She teaches on these issues and has published widely, works with practitioners/services to strengthen practice, and provides research and evaluation, training and management support/coaching to a wide range of organisations.