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Baraabari ki Dagar…Surakshit Safar; Gender Sensitization Program With Commercial Vehicle Drivers

After working in the mental health field for almost 17 years, Manas Foundation extended its reach to commercial drivers as a stand-alone community. The organization transformed its fundamental clinical practice and progressed into the gender sensitization space in full vigour. The foundation initiated a gender sensitization training programme coined ‘Barabari ki Dagar, Surakshit Safar’ in 2014, in response to the notorious Nirbhaya incident. The programme was conceived as an effort to counteract gender injustice.

Barabari ki Dagar, Surakshit Safar is a first-of its-kind intervention within the urban system focusing on gender sensitization, engaging sectors that come in contact with women as part of their work and thereby addressing concerns of gender inequity and injustice. From a unique vantage point, Manas created a programme that uses psychological principles to enforce behavioural change.

With the support of various organizations including Ford Foundation, Indraprastha Gas Limited, Delhi Transport Department, UN Women and Government of Delhi and through collaborative interventions, Manas has strived to instill a sense of agency among drivers to protect and respect women. 

The program’s intention was to highlight that when sensitized law enforcement officers and transport sector workers are motivated to influence their peers and start a movement that works collectively towards a positive change, a safe, secure and women-sensitive environment within Delhi as a prototype of gender-sensitized service sector community could be formed.

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FOOTPRINT SO FAR
- At the initial stage of the programs, gender sensitization trainings were conducted with the auto driving community
- Over 47000 Auto Drivers were trained during the first year of the program.

POSITIVE BEHAVIOUR CHANGE

- 96% of the auto drivers reported applying the training inputs in their work to make public travel safe and address public violence against women in the following ways:

- Dropping women safely, and treating them with courtesy and respect.

- Stopped hesitating taking women passengers in the evening; never refusing to take a woman passenger, and giving preference to them.

- Helping women in distress, and, in few cases, actively seeking the police’s help to assist them.

- Taking forward and sharing the message about Violence against Women with family and friends.

- 65% of auto drivers tarried by MANAS stated that making autos safe for women passengers is very important.

- 86% of the respondents recalled messages around forms of gender discrimination and the unacceptability of Violence against Women.

- 64% of auto drivers recalled messages about legal measures to combat Violence against Women.

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