The project „А-Z to Safety” aims at preventing and protecting young women and girls, mostly from ethnic minorities who are victims or at a risk of becoming victims of harmful practices, such as early forced marriages, honor-based violence (domestic violence, genital mutilation, acid attacks, etc).

The coordinator of the project is Iranian and Kurdish Women’s Rights Organization (IKWRO). Animus Association Foundation is a partner in the project, along with three other organizations – Papatya (Germany), Orient Expres (Austria), Refugee Women’s Association (UK).

The project targets six groups of beneficiaries:

1. Young girls and women, mostly from minority communities (of Roma and Turkish origin) and refugees who are victims or potential victims of harmful practices;

2. Professionals who help beneficiaries: teachers, social workers, police officers, coordinators of NGOs, government officials and others;

3. Community, which needs to change their way of thinking about early marriages, discrimination based on religion or ethnicity, sex crimes and more;

4. The media that will help in order to raise public awareness and change the legislation;

5. Physicians who need more information to assist in the process of termination of harmful practices at European level;6.  Innovations of national legislators and policies that can effect changes in the law.Main project activities include:

1. Offering information, advice, support, assistance and other activities performed by Animus Association Foundation to young girls and women who are victims or potential ones of harmful practices by specially equipped Call center. National Helpline for Children 116 111;

2. Offering psychological counseling office for the purpose of emotional support and dealing with consequences such as post-traumatic stress, anxiety, depression, violence and abuse;

3. Organizing and conducting expert group of professionals to support the process of awareness and identification of harmful practices in target communities. This will be an opportunity to create awareness and promote equality and help vulnerable women and young girls to seek support and assistance;

4. Organizing and conducting workshops for professionals to increase their knowledge and skills to identify victims or potential of harmful practices;

5. Organizing and conducting workshops for beneficiaries in order to empower and increase their self-esteem and personal resources to deal with harmful situations threatening physical and emotional well-being, support in finding jobs, getting acquainted with their fundamental rights, etc.

In 2015:

– young women and girls received information and support through the National Helpline for Children 116 111; as well as psychological consultations;

– expert meetings were held with professionals;

–  trainings were held for victims and potential victims of harmful practices;

–  trainings were held for  professionals;

– flyers were designed,  printed and distributed at various events, conferences and workshops on topics related to harmful practices;

– packs of training materials were created to help professionals working with victims of harmful practices;

– international meetings were held with all project partners.