My name is Soror Lind. I am a member of Sigma Gamma Rho Sorority, Inc. Welcome to the information page for the Women’s Wellness Initiative I am running in Sweden. I am a military wife and a member of our Sorority’s Military Initiatives Ad Hoc Committee Task Force. I am the lead for coordinating and maintaining contact with our active duty and retired Sorors and military family outside of the United States.
Since joining our illustrious Sorority in 2020, this is my first international service project. I chose Women’s and Girls Shelters across Sweden that serve domestic abuse victims. Why is this important? Here are some facts from the World Health Organization.
Violence against women
Key facts – Here is the source and link for more information.
- Violence against women – particularly intimate partner violence and sexual violence – is a major public health problem and a violation of women’s human rights.
- Estimates published by WHO indicate that globally about 1 in 3 (30%) of women worldwide have been subjected to either physical and/or sexual intimate partner violence or non-partner sexual violence in their lifetime.
- Most of this violence is intimate partner violence. Worldwide, almost one-third (27%) of women aged 15-49 years who have been in a relationship report that they have been subjected to some form of physical and/or sexual violence by their intimate partner.
- Violence can negatively affect women’s physical, mental, sexual, and reproductive health, and may increase the risk of acquiring HIV in some settings.
- Violence against women is preventable. The health sector has an important role to play to provide comprehensive health care to women subjected to violence, and as an entry point for referring women to other support services, they may need.
Additional shelters to support may be added. Some shelters provide housing, while others offer different services. You are able to choose which shelter you want to support by either donating hygiene articles. Choose Cecilia Heikkinen’s Gift Registry Address for delivery. or money directly to the shelter.
In Sweden, women’s and girls’ shelters are organized by Roks.
Roks, the National Organisation for Women’s Shelters and Young Women’s Shelters in Sweden, is the largest member organization for women’s shelters and young women’s shelters in the country. Roks aims at safeguarding the common interests of the shelters in their work against male violence toward women.
Roks strives to shape public opinion, and actively works to make the public aware of the reality that the shelters face, as well as to conduct outward dialogues around the issues concerning the shelters. There are currently around 100 women’s and young women’s shelters within the organization.
Roks is a feministic organization working on the rights of women and young women’s rights and liberation, as well as equality on all levels.
The Women’s Shelters
Each shelter is independent with its own working methods. However, what all the shelters have in common is an emergency helpline where women and young women can call if they need support. All callers can choose to remain anonymous should they so wish, and no one is registered.
The women’s shelters offer support based on the individual needs and wishes of each woman. Perhaps she needs to talk about her situation and her current relationship. She might even need advice about a police report or a custody dispute. It could also be about being the victim of sexual abuse, either recently or several years ago. The women working at the shelters provide conversational support and advice and can also go along as support when visiting the police, lawyers, and social services for example. Many shelters also offer sheltered housing for women and their children.
A number of shelters also have a separate legal hotline. Some shelters have text telephones to cater to women with impaired hearing. Other shelters specialize in receiving adults subjected to incest.
The Young Women’s Shelters
There are approximately 30 young women’s shelters within Roks, of which around ten are independent organizations. The young women’s shelters work in much the same way as the women’s shelters but turn to younger women who, for example, have been subjected to threats, ill-treatment, and sexual abuse, or, for some other reason, need to talk to another girl. They also actively work towards making the public aware of the girls’ living conditions. The Young Women’s shelters have their own website at www.rokstjejjourer.se
How you can help regardless of your geographical location
If you are reading this, you may be in a position to help. Below, you are able to learn more about the shelters we are supporting.
You can read more about my Sorority Sigma Gamma Rho’s Women’s Wellness Initiative from this link: bit.ly/MIAHWWISE
You can donate directly to the shelter you would like to support. Those details are below.
You can purchase hygiene articles from Amazon from our list to be delivered to the shelter from this link: bit.ly/MIAHWWI2. Choose Cecilia Heikkinen’s Gift Registry Address for delivery.
If you are familiar with a women’s or girls’ shelter in Sweden we have yet to work with, please share this page with them and email me via adrianne.georgelind (at) sgrhoneregion.org. I am super happy to add them to our list if they accept our help.
Thank you! or tack as we say here in Sweden.
Thank you for choosing to support women, their children, and girls that seek help when they are in a domestic violence situation. Every bit helps the women’s and girls’ shelters serve them and us.