The Nigerien NGO also provides help to the country’s most vulnerable women and girls
IGEP prize money recipient’s shelter project progressing at a fast pace
SOS FEVVF, the recipient of the sum donated as part of the International Gender Equality Prize in 2017, is using the funds to realise their long-time dream of establishing a residential shelter. Construction work on the shelter, located in the Nigerien capital of Niamey, began in mid-October.
“The first materials have been delivered to the construction site and the workers have begun making bricks,” comments Mariama Moussa, founder and president of SOS FEVVF, via email.
“Our goal is for the shelter, which we call the house of hope, to be ready to open its doors at the start of 2019. We will begin our operations in temporary facilities before the new building is complete,” Mariama Moussa continues.
The first recipient of the Government of Finland’s International Gender Equality Prize, Chancellor Angela Merkel, directed the EUR 150,000 sum to the organisation.
“With the prize money, we can work to alleviate the suffering of victims of gender-based violence in Niamey and the surrounding area,” Mariama Moussa explains.
“Women and girls who are victims of violence can live in the shelter with their children in a safe, comfortable environment where they can receive comprehensive professional help. This also reduces the risk of stigmatisation of victims,” Moussa continues.
The shelter will employ a psychologist, two social workers, two cooks, two cleaners, a guard and a driver. It will have four bedrooms, a conversation room, a kitchen and a space just for children.
Mental and sexual violence is a very common problem in Niger, and help is very seldom available to the victims. SOS FEVVF also helps the most vulnerable women and children in the most remote areas of the country.
“The people of Niger were very happy to see the work of our organisation gain international recognition. The prize has also inspired our partners to engage with us and provide further support for our organisation,” Mariama Moussa says with a smile.