WHY THIS PROJECT?
Gender-based violence persists with alarming numbers, impacting the health and well-being of girls and boys and young women and men across the EU. Reaching an array of young people in diverse settings and from diverse backgrounds is essential to addressing the complexity of experiences and manifestations of gender-inequalities and violence.
Moreover, gender-based violence among youth is being expressed in new ways that still lack the adequate knowledge and tools to address them, such as online violence and cyber-bullying. Violence is also related to attitudes around gender-equality, with both men and women questioned demonstrating less gender-equitable attitudes where exposure to violence is high. Addressing gender-based violence is of urgent concern, however there remains a lack of evidence based tools to prevent it, and although it is increasingly recognized as imperative to gender-equity and violence prevention, there is a large gap in addressing the role of gender-norms and limited gender-identities, in the socialization of boys and men. In other words, models of masculinity and understandings of what it is to “be a man”, for young boys remain limited and are often based on gender-unequitable attitudes and behaviours. Not only does this lead to the use of violence within teenage relationships but it can also influence the use of and exposure to gender-based violence as an adult.
Limited models of masculinity do not only influence the use of violence in romantic relationships, but also between young men themselves as they seek to assert gendered-identities. Both addressing non-equitable models of masculinity and empowering women and girls are necessary to achieve broad and sustainable changes. By engaging boys and men alongside girls and women, evidence demonstrates that this can prevent the intergenerational transmission of violence.