In November 2008, the Rwanda MenEngage Network was established in an effort to effectively engage men to end violence in Rwanda. A decision was made to put in place a MenEngage Steering Committee that will oversee and orient all efforts made by all stakeholders for this purpose. The Rwanda MenEngage Network is chaired and coordinated by Rwanda Men's Resource Centre (RWAMREC) which was created in 2006 in order to act on national challenges related to gender-based violence (GBV) and gender inequalities by engaging men to play a significant role in partnership with women in Rwanda. The goal of the network is to reach men and boys in order to engage them on interventions that aim to promote gender equality, to improve health-seeking behaviours and health outcomes, to protect human rights and to prevent violence and HIV in Rwanda through advocacy and mobilisation, network leadership and information-sharing, especially on male engagement approaches in Rwanda.
Network Steering Committee
The Rwanda MenEngage network is led by a Steering Committee which is composed of two co-chairpersons who have been voted in democratically and a network Secretariat in RWAMREC. The network Secretariat is in charge of implementing the network's Action Plan and is accountable to the Steering Committee. The Steering Committee is expected to play an advisory and facilitation role amongst various actors from the MenEngage Network members so that the various efforts are properly coordinated and harmonized for the fight against gender-based violence in Rwanda.
The overall objective of the Steering Committee is to provide guidance and technical assistance to the network Secretariat in the framework of implementing the MenEngage approach in Rwanda by the different network members, and to ensure proper coordination of efforts of promoting gender equality and GBV prevention through the engagement of men and boys.
Strategies of the network
The Rwanda MenEngage network is supported by the MenEngage Africa Secretariat and, we operate through following intervention strategies:
- Carrying out advocacy in collaboration with Steering Committee members and other actors in the country for a nationwide mass mobilisation, especially engaging men & boys, girls' education, sexual and reproductive health and rights (SRHR), women's empowerment and children's rights.
- Promoting the Men Engage approach in Rwanda.
- Representing Rwanda in other forums, such as regional, Africa and Global Men Engage.
Key achievements of the network
- Conducting the first IMAGE Research on Masculinity and GBV in Rwanda in 2010.
- Implementation of the UNTF grant through MEA/SONKE.
- Policy scan report of Rwandan policies and laws on engaging men and boys in GBV prevention and response in partnership with MEA.
- Implementation of Mencare+ Programme campaign in Rwanda.