The ALCIPE Project sought to disseminate information on the issue of violence against women targeting the general public, victims and potential women victims, as well as professionals working with these issues. It also sought to establish guidelines on assistance to victims in order to contribute towards the standardisation of a code of good practice within the European context.
The victim support association Apoio Portuguesa à Vítima (APAV) in Portugal, with partners in the UK and the Netherlands, ran a multi-media awareness-raising campaign to make people aware of the issues of domestic violence and sexual violence, and to mobilise women to seek help if they were victims or at risk, and the general public to report cases and support the women.
A wide range of materials was produced, divided into public awareness-raising materials, information for victims or at-risk women, and a manual and training kit for those working in agencies supporting the women. All the materials were produced in English and Portuguese and carry an identifying logo and the campaign name ALCIPE.
For awareness raising, two different sizes of poster were produced. One is targeted at the women and reads ‘We understand that you don’t want to come forward. A victim of violence is a victim of crime. Don’t stay silent.’ The poster also contains information women need to contact APAV or other support services. The second poster is targeted at the general public and urges them to act if they know someone is a victim of violence. It includes the APAV information line phone number.
Four leaflets were developed, two on domestic violence (as above, one for women, one for the general public), and two on sexual violence.
A sticker with the APAV information line phone number was also produced, since a sticker can be put somewhere handy so that it can be easily consulted. It was widely distributed throughout the community and to support agencies.
For professional groups working with victims (social workers, psychologists, legal advisors etc), training kits were created containing all the promotional materials and the ALCIPE manual. This was designed to allow easy handling and to fit in the pocket so that professionals could carry it with them. It is double-sided, with one part called ‘understanding’ and the other ‘how to act’ – this is an interesting idea and makes very clearly the link between knowing and acting.
There were also TV and radio spots, and a parallel press campaign. All the materials were brought together under a specially designed logo, which is a simple, stylised flower. The colours of the logo were chosen because they are unusual in information and awareness campaigns in Portugal and so would be noticed and remembered. At the launch of the campaign, flowers were given to all the women present to help ‘fix’ the logo in their minds.
The project also aimed to develop and establish a good practice manual for the staff members of relevant agencies, who deal on a daily basis with women victims of violence.
Finally it developed information and training kits, containing all these materials (in Portuguese) for the national agencies’ staff as well as national partners, and (in English) for the other European partners and relevant European agencies.