Authors of the community «Coronavirus_info» has launched another one – to combat domestic violence

Stop Abuse Ukraine: A new Viber channel to counteract domestic tyranny

What to do if my husband hits me? What if it’s a father or a mother? Do I actually suffer from psychological abuse by my wife? Answers to these questions can be found on the new Stop Abuse Ukraine Viber channel. This community is part of the all-Ukrainian information campaign on combating domestic violence «It seems».

The Institute of Cognitive Modeling, Masha Efrosinina’s Masha Foundation, and the Red Cross Society of Ukraine launched the educational campaign. It was presented in February at the Olympic Stadium in Kyiv, together with the launch of an anonymous online diary «It seems», where victims can share their stories.

The Stop Abuse Ukraine Viber channel was the next step in this campaign. Its goal is to comprehensively inform about one of the main problems in Ukraine, teach to recognize violence, and form zero tolerance towards abusers.

«The fact that victims of domestic violence are still afraid to speak loud is a huge problem,» says TV presenter, and project ambassador Masha Efrosinina. «But there is another problem: those who dare to speak often do not know where to run. Are you sure that when you are stressed, you’ll remember the police number? Not to mention the number of free legal help – not everyone even knows that it exists. One of the main tasks of our Viber channel is to inform: to tell you where to look for help, what kind of help it can be, how to get into the crisis room, where to get free psychological advice and know your rights, learn to recognize psychological violence. Because few people actually understand that the absence of bruises does not mean that you are safe. In addition, the channel will publish inspiring stories of famous people who broke out of the vicious circle of violence and built a new life.»

The community will also include contacts of services that can assist in countering domestic tyranny, as well as information about new laws and initiatives, says Viktor Berezenko, founder of the Institute of Cognitive Modeling.

«Viber was and remains the most popular messenger in Ukraine,» says Berezenko. “The Institute of Cognitive Modeling already has cases of successfully implemented projects such as «Coronavirus_info» and «School_info», where the total number of subscribers exceeds four million Ukrainians. For our project on counteracting domestic violence «It seems» it is very important to have another communication channel through which we can convey important information to victims and those who can help them. Our task is to make everyone understand that violence is not a private matter of those involved, but a problem of the whole society. We want society to stop tolerating violence, justifying abusers, and blaming victims. The Viber channel will be a powerful tool for performing these tasks.»

You can find a verified Viber channel by searching for Stop Abuse Ukraine in Messenger.

Every year, almost 2 million Ukrainians suffer from domestic violence. To draw public attention to this problem and reveal impressive statistics, the initiators of the «It seems» campaign also launched a series of advertising posters. Billboards and citylights «Stop Being Silent» can be seen on the streets of Kyiv.