Best of 2020 Women

Peacebuilding in Sudan from Bhutan

By Denka Choden, Bhutan

In 2017, a year after I attended the Gender-based Violence Prevention and Response training at QUT under Australia Awards, with the blessing of our visionary, Supreme Commander, His Majesty The King, I represented Bhutan to a peace-keeping mission in North Dafur, Sudan.

The women and girls in North Dafur were extremely vulnerable to sexual abuse and had a huge number of rape cases not reported due to shame and fear of stigmatization within the community. I dedicated myself to assisting these women, children and other internally displaced persons (IDP). As an initial strategy, I taught them basic English and Mathematics, to help ease the entire process in addressing women-related issues. Soon after, my heartfelt efforts were recognised and trust was built among the local women leaders and community leaders at IDP Camps. Addressing women-related problems and sharing conduit information have significantly improved. My principles, aspiration, hard-work and goals have always been driven from the eye-opening training that I received from Australian Awards Fellowship through QUT.

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