Komisyon Fanm Viktim Pou Viktim (KOFAVIV)

Komisyon Fanm Viktim Pou Viktim (KOFAVIV, or the Commission of Women Victims for Victims) is a Haitian non-profit group led by survivors of sexual violence. Seeking to combat sexual violence at every level, the group is both a support network for victims and a solidarity network fostering a wider collective struggle against sexual exploitation.

KOFAVIV was formed in 2004 by a group of women from poor neighborhoods in Port-au-Prince, all of whom, as activists, had been victims of sexual violence during Haiti's military dictatorship of 1991-1994. The group began by opening a clinic to provide relief for victims of rape and other forms of abuse. Currently, the group focuses its efforts on rape prevention (especially in tent camps for internally displaced persons following Haiti's 2010 earthquake), legal accompaniment for victims, and protests against national and international authorities that fail to confront sexual violence issues.

KOFAVIV has recently extended its support network to include children and teenagers forced into prostitution. Through sewing, pottery, and screen-printing lessons, the group aims to lead young victims of sexual exploitation towards economic independence and out of the cycle of vulnerability. In addition, KOFAVIV maintains solidarity groups for victims of all forms of sexual violence, which provide both psychological support and an outlet for women to collectively address the deeper causes of this problem.

A 2013 grant from the Cultures of Resistance Network supported rehabilitation efforts, including vocational training, for twenty-five former child prostitutes, ages twelve to seventeen.

Website: www.kofaviv.org

 

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