June 21, 2016

DFID V4C, Nigeria – inspiring a generation of new voices to speak up for gender equality


Voices for Change (V4C) Nigeria is a £26 m programme funded by the UK Department for International Development (DFID). Its mission is to inspire a generation of new voices to speak up and speak out, empowering adolescent girls and women to achieve their real and full potential. The programme targets young women and men in the 16-25 age range as agents of change. This is the same age group that is leading a wider call for change in Nigerian society –the ‘New Naija’ and the intention is that gender equality should be part of this new national dialogue. The programme has five complimentary outputs and is distinctive because it works across all five areas at the same time and in an inter-connected manner as well as having a major emphasis on media and communications:

  • Working with adolescent girls and women to improve life skills, building networks and campaigning to promote positive social norm change in three areas: violence against women and girls; women’s leadership; and women’s role in decision making.
  • Use of new and traditional media to promote positive social norm change and challenge discrimination;
  • Working with men and boys and key influencers (particularly religious and traditional leaders) to promote positive gender norms;
  • Building a platform for action to push through legislation on gender equality and violence against women and girls and changes to the policy environment;
  • Generating evidence to underpin policy and programming for gender equality.

Examples of innovative research and programming to date include:

  • Development of a brand – iampurple – to create a movement for change.
  • A radio programme – Purple Tinz – aimed at young people and integrating messaging to transform attitudes and behaviours around gender into radio drama.
  • Creation of an online purple platform for young people – for information sharing, dialogue and action on gender equality.
  • Design of a digital safe spaces programme, intended to replicate a physical safe space model in digital space in order to reach a much wider number of young people.
  • Research into the role of men and masculinities and use of social media to create a dialogue on ‘Being a Man’ in Nigeria.

V4C is a four year programme that is designing, testing and evidencing new approaches to tackling gender equality at scale. Social Development Direct is responsible for technical leadership across the programme and for bringing together a team of Nigerian and international experts with technical expertise in the fields of gender equality, social norms, media and communications, and research and evidence. The consortium is led by Palladium and also includes Itad and Women’s Rights Advancement and Protection Alternative (WRAPA).

For more information on the V4C programme please visit http://www.v4c-nigeria.com/

Photo credit: V4C (UNILAG Purple Club Campaign)