Peacebuilding en Las Américas
In January, AVP El Salvador Trained Leaders Working with Sex Workers
By Salomón Medina, AVP El Salvador National Coordinator and Monica Maher, PLA Coordinator
AVP training began at the Samaritan House ministry for sex workers on 15-16 January with a Basic workshop for staff, some of whom are former sex workers.
Understanding the reality of vulnerable and excluded groups is a very difficult challenge to fulfill in El Salvador. This is especially true since we are prone to stigma, stereotypes, contempt, misunderstanding and even ridicule, which can generate discouragement in our work. It is important that we highlight this in order to start changing.
The valuable ministry that the leadership of Samaritan House develops with sex workers in our country deserves that we support it because its mission is focused on this group of vulnerable people, excluded and marginalized from our Salvadoran society, for which they need tools to carry out more effective work. This is where Alternatives to Violence Project (AVP) can play an important role.
The analysis of the violence from those of us who work from the vulnerable and excluded sectors makes us see reality with another perspective. This perspective helps us serve and accompany in a better way, and not remain immobile in the face of what is happening instead of just pointing it out, trying to justify in a childish way, or doing nothing.
According to one participant:
I learned how important it is to value and respect myself. I learned to see the best in others. I liked how participative it was, that we had time to play, learn, participate…. Thanks to the workshop, I confirmed that the decisions I have made were successful in avoiding violence and in ending relationships that caused me harm; here I confirmed that I had not respected myself. This will help me speak up and describe when someone harms me, without causing violence.