Unfortunately, there is a culture of impunity within the Indian system, where often than not perpetrators of violence go unpunished.
Through its member organisations, the Network carries out a number of workshops across 5 states for the police, other judiciary bodies, village panchayats and other government departments aimed at raising their awareness about the severity of the issue of VAW and the necessity of implementing existing laws in place to protect women and reduce the incidence of violence.
We believe that gender equality will not be achieved without the involvement of men and boys, and changing attitudes and behaviours between men and women in order to create more harmonious relationships based on mutual respect.
Through its member organisations, the Network carries workshops in 5 states to raise awareness among men and boys, including community leaders, about gender relations and the important role women play in society. Gender sensitisation is also carried out at village level through street theatre, posters and other community events.
Through the home visits programme, women victims of violence are identified and referred to support services where they get medical help, psychological counselling and legal advice and support. Through our local partners, we ensure that registered cases are progressing through the justice system to reach conviction, and more serious cases of violence are taken up to the high court level for resolution.
Due to fear of retaliation and fear of shame, many women do not report incidences of violence. Therefore, through the Maitri Network, we reach out to families where violence or risk of violence has been identified. Visits are undertaken by social workers who meet with the women to assess the severity of the situation and offer them guidance on how to proceed. Victims are referred, and if necessary accompanied to counselling , medical, or legal services and are encouraged to register their cases.
Social workers also try reaching out to the men involved in order to find a peaceful resolution to the root issue. They may in some instances, where the husband is in agreement, refer the couple to counselling.
Each year during the 16 Days of Activism, the Maitri Network carries out a campaign on violence against women where they take to the streets, and undertake a series of outreach and awareness activities, targeting men and women, boys and girls, government officials and the police.
Around 20,000 people are reached each year during these campaigns.