The significance of affective social relationships in preventing gender-based violence
Violence against women (VAW) is a reality affecting many young women and girls today in Europe and across the world. The Fundamental Rights Agency (FRA) survey on VAW distributed among 42000 women found that 33% have experienced physical or sexual violence before they turn 15 (FRA, 2014). Consistently, UNICEF (2014) reports that more than 120 million girls worldwide (more than 1 in 10) have experienced forced intercourse or other sexual acts at some point in their lives. In 14 of the surveyed countries, at least 1 in 5 girls who reported at least one incident of sexual violence said it occurred for the first time between the ages of 10 and 14. These figures unveil an alarming reality: victims of VAW are increasingly younger, and the spaces where these violent acts occur are widespread, surrounding many girls’ lives. The creation of communities free of gender violence is urgent and necessary in order to guarantee the proper fulfilment of basic rights. Previous studies have already shown that a preventive socialization model based on zero violence from zero years (0 from 0) - which rejects any sort of violence (Mayes and Cohen, 2002) from the very early years - is evidencing promising effects to reduce violence rates during children’s whole life, and therefore improving quality of education (Rios-Gonzalez, Puigvert, Sanvicen and Aubert, 2019; European Commission, 2011).
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