Governor Bala Mohammed of Bauchi State (file photo)
By Ahmed Ahmed
A non-governmental organization (NGO), Attah Sisters Helping Hand foundation (ASHHF), in collaboration with the Bauchi State Ministry of Women Affairs and Child Development is to establish a psychosocial counseling centre for sexual gender based violence survivors in Bauchi.
The foundation’s Executive Director, Mrs Comfort Attah, said at the stakeholders’ meeting in Bauchi on Friday, that the counseling office was supported by the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO).
She further disclosed that all arrangement had been concluded with the state Ministry of Women Affairs for the establishment of psychosocial counseling centre within the ministry.
She assured that the office would provide psychosocial support that involves providing emotional and psychological care to an individual who is a survivor or victim of any form of SGBV.
“All actions taken would be guided by respect for the choices, wishes, rights and dignity of the survivor.
“The safety and security of the survivor is the number one priority for all actors.
“People have the right to choose to whom they will or will not, tell their story,” Attah said.
According to her, the services provided include psychological first aid, emergency contraception, post-exposure prophylaxis for sexually transmitted infections (STIs) among others.
On his part, Alhaji Aliyu Sulaiman, the permanent secretary of the ministry, said that it was a welcome development to establish within the counseling centre, saying that it would go a long way in the transformation of the SGVB survivors in the state.
He said that the establishment of the counseling centre would complement the efforts of the Ministry towards curbing gender-based violence in the state.
The permanent secretary pledged to brief the commissioner for Women Affairs on the relevance of the office and the effort of the foundation and UNESCO in fighting the dreaded menace of gender-based violence in the state.