Since our beginnings more than 25 years ago, Heart-Links has made gender equality and the rights of women and girls a top priority.
Early projects focused on developing women-led spaces such as the community kitchens in Zaña. In these spaces, women supported each other and took on leadership roles.
As conditions in northern Peru changed, the projects Heart-Links supported also changed. But our commitment to promoting gender equality and ending gender-based violence did not.
Empowerment, leadership training, income generation and skills development for women and girls are still a top priority. In recent years, Heart-Links has also started supporting projects that work with men to end gender-based violence and discrimination.
Run by Heart-Links’ partner Centro Santa Angela and financed by Cambia Development Foundation, this work with men is breaking new ground in Peru. A permanent network of men who support gender equality was created in Chiclayo and this network has connected with others in the region and across Latin America.
Men who participate learn about the social and cultural roots of machismo, what gender-base violence is and how to eradicate it from their own relationships, paternal responsibility, sexuality and managing emotions and, most recently, violence against women in the context of the COVID-19 pandemic.
To reach other men as well, they are developing videos, radio spots, and a teaching guide for use in high school. As one of the young men in the video above says, “This is a place where you can remake yourself in ways that are more just, more equal, showing more empathy, able to show your emotions.”
You can follow the network on Facebook.