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In the Spotlight: Q and A with Ermiza Tegal on the forum on GBV

The Forum against Gender Based Violence was setup in August 2005 following a consultation with selected agencies in order to facilitate greater coordination, understanding, and sharing of resources to strengthen a multi-sectoral response to GBV.

Nearly ten years later, it has now reached an important stage where the membership is planning to review the current structure to transform the forum to its next stage. We spoke to Emiza Tegal, Reseracher, Consultant, and Faciliattor at the concept building mechanism workshop to hear her thoughts on the forum on GBV.


Which organization do you represent?

I come from a legal background as well as human rights. I am also working with Strategic Partnership Solutions as a facilitator for the current phase of the forum.


What is your main objective as a facilitator?

To help organizations focus their thinking, so that they can find value in what they do.


Have you been involved in similar forums?

I have been involved in many different types of forums, such as gender and human rights. My legal work also tends to focus on similar gender matters such as domestic violence and divorce.


What do you think is the biggest challenge in terms of addressing GBV in SL?

There are lots of things that contribute to it but I think things would work a lot easier if there was better political will. Political will also stems from socio-cultural backgrounds and attitudes towards GBV and is an indicator of what people think of the issue at the ground level. So that's where the changes need to happen and that's a longer, wider process that needs to infiltrate many different areas, including media.


What are your main expectations for today?

To have an in depth discussion about what the forum is and help all the members understand what the common ground is because there can be lots of limitations for each organization depending on where they are coming from and what there mandates are about. These members have seen value in this forum ten years ago and I firmly believe that there is value for this forum even today.


How will you help them do this?

By negotiating the space to make an effective intervention and helping the members thoroughly understand how they engage with each other and outside organizations.
I will be helping them carefully look at the context of the forum and then understand and negotiate that space on how we can all work together. Sometimes when you don't understand the concept fully, you begin to see that that there are roadblocks towards you getting census on an activity or initiative.


What will be the final outcome of today's workshop?

If we can get some consensus, we will demystify a lot of the roadblocks and start developing mechanisms to address these roadblocks. Today is all about looking at some key pressure points within the forum such as financing, structure, responsibilities and roles, so that everyone has a comprehensive understanding.