By Roi Lomotan
The city’s Local Council on Women (LCW) aims to improve the skills of Violence against Women (VAW) Desk officers in the barangays through capability-building activities and orientations this month.
These activities are part of the city’s observance of National Women’s Month in March.
LCW Chair Rosalinda Abellon said the activities aim to enhance the capabilities of barangay VAW desk officers in handling women survivors of gender-based violence.
A special orientation on Republic Act (R.A.) 9262, R.A. 7610, and HIV-AIDs will be held on March 15 at the Women’s Center Building along Rizal Boulevard.
The LCW will also hold capability-building measures for first responders in the barangays.
“Dili man nato sila matapok, ang atong mga service provider team na naa sa LCW mao na mismo moy atong dad-on sa barangay ug adto na didto himoon ang pagbansay-bansay (We may not be able to gather them in one venue, that’s why the service provider from LCW will visit barangays to conduct capability trainings),” Abellon said.
The capability building activity for the barangay VAW desk officers started on March 1.
City Prosecutor Lalaine Cimafranca noted that a lot of things still need to be done in terms of how Violence Against Women and Children (VAWC) cases are handled in courts.
“It needs a lot of improvement in the initial response, documentation process, monitoring and in the full prosecution of cases, ug ang pinaka-importante is after care. Kung wala ang pinaka-last na after care, it will come as a repetitive cycle. (The most important is aftercare. If this is absent, it will be a repetitive cycle),” Cimafranca explained.
With this, she emphasized that the VAW desk officers play a crucial role in building a strong basis for a case.
“Your role and initial actions, they are very important. Kung dili insakto sa sugod, dili na nimo matambalan (If it is not properly handled from the start, there is no remedy to it),” Cimafranca said.
“Kami ang receiving end sa unsang inyong gihimo sa una ninyong pagresponde sa nanginahanglan. Ug dili maayo ang pagka-asiste, that will be documented and bisag usaon ninyong wipe-out, dili na siya ma-erase. Whatever you will do, your initial response is very crucial (We are the receiving end of your actions. It if the individual was poorly assisted that will be documented and it can’t be erased),” she added.
Cimafranca appealed for cooperation from the barangay VAW desk officers to ensure successful handling of VAW cases.
“Let us work hand in hand. We need to coordinate. We can only be as effective in the performance of our task if we are given the kind of input from you,” she said.