School for consultants of the State Institution "Government Contact Center"
The first call to the "hotline" of the NGO "La Strada-Ukraine" came on October 18, 1997. At first it was one channel that ran once a week. But the large number of appeals and requests, the need of the population for such a resource encouraged development. Much has changed since then, and through hard work and a commitment to continuous improvement, this telephone counseling service has grown into the National Domestic Violence, Human Trafficking and Gender Discrimination Hotline, which today operates 24/7.
The path that was covered for more than 20 years, the experience that was gained and the challenges that were accepted - helped to establish the "hot" line, its development, dissemination of information about it and gaining trust among the population.
Our experience and knowledge became the basis for conducting Schools for the training of "hotline" counselors for the prevention of gender-based violence, in particular domestic violence. Such Schools were held for the State Institution "Government Contact Center" 1545 with the support of the OSCE Project Coordinator in Ukraine, for regional "hot lines", for KYIV 1500 with the support United Nations Population Fund in Ukraine - UNFPA Ukraine.
"La Strada-Ukraine" continues the training of telephone consultants. The 4-day School for consultants of the State Institution "Government Contact Center" started today. This School is a step in the system of training consultants of the State Institution "Government Contact Center" for effective response to appeals related to domestic violence and implementation of the state's obligations to provide assistance to victims.
The training will take place in several stages, and today is the first step for Government Call Center consultants in a large-scale system for responding to reports of domestic violence. Along with experience and knowledge, we transfer responsibility and challenges that arise during consulting.
"Hotline" is a litmus test for social change. You will be able to see new challenges and needs that appear in society. Tracking such calls and responding accordingly is critical to providing effective care. We will be happy to share the experience gained over more than 20 years of work of the National Hotline for the prevention of domestic violence, human trafficking and gender discrimination, but we will also share more with you the responsibilities and challenges that the Hotline faces. - said the vice-president of the NGO "La Strada-Ukraine" Kateryna Cherepaha at the beginning of the training.
The training school for "hotline" counselors was made possible thanks to the cooperation of the NGO "La Strada-Ukraine" with the UN Population Fund in Ukraine and with the financial support of the Government of Great Britain.
"It is a great honor for us to support the activities of the government call center. We hope that this will become an effective mechanism and service for support, redirection, and creating understanding among the victims about their rights and opportunities," emphasized Olena Kochimirovska, adviser on the prevention and counteraction of gender-based violence of the UN Fund in the field of population.
In her turn, Valentyna Osadcha, head of the department for countering human trafficking and prevention of domestic violence of the Ministry of Social Policy of Ukraine, noted that the creation of a government contact center is an event demanded by society:
"All international experts recognized our law on preventing and combating domestic violence as the best law that exists in Europe. You are standing on the territory of a historical fact, when the Law is being implemented in Ukraine. He gave revolutionary changes to get people legal protection. Now the number of appeals is increasing, because people understand that there is a State and their rights are protected."
Together with our experience, we convey the challenges and risks that await consultants. After all, timely prevention, support and help is a considerable responsibility.
Maryna Legenka and Alyona Kryvulyak, experts from the NGO "La Strada-Ukraine", will train the consultants of the Government Contact Center. During their training, they will focus on helping victims of domestic violence. These will be information-rich days, after which the participants will deepen their knowledge and be able to provide even more effective consultations to those who need them.