Funded through Nova Scotia’s Sexual Violence Prevention Innovation Fund, this project will offer opportunities to gather diverse groups of parents in casual, accessible spaces to talk about socially constructed gender norms and their role in sexual violence prevention. In these facilitated kitchen table conversations, parents will explore how to raise confident, empowered, authentic children, and how pressure to conform to gender constructs shapes their parenting and their children’s social relationships.
Our Project Coordinator, Alison Smith, will approach mothers and fathers to invite friends (5-8 people) to engage in a series of conversations in their own homes about how gender is influencing their perspectives and decisions about parenting. Each group will be assisted by a facilitator (project staff) for a minimum of 2-3 sessions, with discussion guides and resources. Community organizations will also be invited to host groups at their locations, within their own networks and participate in developing the discussion guides and resources, with attention to simple, accessible language for the participants served.
Intended outcomes are to: create blame-free, non-judgmental, supportive spaces for honest exploration of gender and healthy relationships; generate parental strategies to navigate these issues as children grow; and add to the body of knowledge about preventive approaches to sexual violence.
The year-long project is almost over – please look for a report soon!
Thank you to Alison Smith for all of her hard work, expertise, facilitation and research!
Check out the resource for parents that Alison developed: