Protecting and empowering

Preventing violence against women

Across the world, charities and NGOs are working to prevent violence against women. As the world marks the International Day for the Elimination of Violence against Women on 25 November, we find out how Capgemini’s charity partners are addressing the root causes of this important issue.

According to the United Nations, “violence against women and girls is one of the most widespread, persistent and devastating human rights violations in our world today”. Capgemini believes that making real progress on the issue of gender inequality depends on addressing its fundamental causes, including the lack of access to quality education.

One charity tackling this very issue in Morocco is CSSF – they’re helping girls from rural areas to develop their education and sense of individuality.

According to its president, Naima Senhadji, CSSF is based on the values of participation, equal opportunities, and a culture of human rights. “CSSF was created with a clear vision: to ensure all rural girls in Morocco have access to quality education, are aware of their role in society, and fully enjoy their rights,” says Naima. “This prevents underage marriage and early labour, both of which are forms of violence against girls.”

Capgemini has financed the schooling of girls and funded the entire cost of two homes in Morocco, enabling 40 girls from rural areas to continue their studies.

Turning fear to joy in India

Also tackling the root causes of violence is the Deenabandhu Trust, which works with Capgemini to improve the way young children at schools in India learn.

“The students at these schools come from very poor backgrounds,” says Saibal Mitra from the Trust. “We are also aware of the domestic violence that takes place in society, especially towards young girls. Addressing this issue was paramount for this project.”

Capgemini has helped the trust develop an awareness programme designed to promote a joyful learning experience, where children are taught to understand their human rights. In doing so, they have more chance to grow up free from violence.

Addressing complications from COVID in France

With the COVID-19 pandemic, the issues facing vulnerable women have only intensified. Not only have cases of domestic violence risen, some organisations that offer shelter to women have been unable to take new residents.

Capgemini contacted the Fondation des Femmes in France, which works with women experiencing violence, to offer a solution: the Serge Kampf Les Fontaines Campus, named after Capgemini’s founder, would be opened as a safe haven for a group of woman and children.

Celine Rancoule, director of patronage at the Fondation des Femmes, thanked the Capgemini teams for their help. “The project involved opening up Les Fontaines during full lockdown, in greatest secrecy. However, the team showed incredible professionalism to make this happen in record time in difficult circumstances.”

Safety and shelter

AFJ is another French organisation that has benefited from Capgemini’s support. AFJ provides protection, accommodation and educational, psychological and legal support for women at risk from sex trafficking.

Its president, Yolanda Gutierrez Moya, says: “Trafficking in human beings is a serious crime and a grave violation of human rights. France is the destination country for women and girls trafficked for sexual exploitation, forced labour and domestic servitude.”

Capgemini teams have used their digital, data and cloud skills to help AFJ fulfil its goals.

Rebuilding careers

Other groups are creating opportunities for women who have suffered violence to succeed in their careers. For example, the charity Led by HER promotes better access to entrepreneurship for women, and fights to secure greater rights.

“We help women who have suffered from violence to rebuild their lives through entrepreneurship teaching, coaching and mentoring” says Chiara Condi, founder. “Our program is the first of its kind to specifically address the challenge of rebuilding a woman’s professional career, rather than meeting their emergency needs.”

Capgemini has helped the organization to scale digitally, by building a new platform that will help mobilize more volunteers to help even more women.

One day to empower the future

Capgemini is extremely proud to be working with these fantastic organizations to build a violence-free future for all. As the world marks the International Day for the Elimination of Violence against Women on 25 November, we send them our thanks and appreciation.