Photo: Safer Women allows women in the humanitarian sector to voice their security concerns. Harjono Djoyobisono, RedR Australia.

Safer Women Training for Plan International Australia

RedR Australia ran its Safer Women course for 17 headquarter staff at Plan International Australia in August, providing a safe place for women in the humanitarian sector to discuss the unique challenges and specific security risks they face in the field.

Safer Women was introduced to RedR Australia’s suite of humanitarian training courses in March, to provide the highest level of preparedness for women working in or travelling to hostile or unsafe environments, including post-natural disaster, conflict and post-conflict situations.

Senior Humanitarian Trainer at RedR Australia Meaghan Barry, who delivered the course to Plan staff on August 30–31, said gender-specific training is rare in the humanitarian sector, but is important given the different security challenges faced by men and women.

“The risks individuals face in the field depends on their profile. This could include things like age, religion and gender. Men and women present very different risk profiles,” said Meaghan. “This course was designed to address the specific security risks women face in the field.”

Meaghan said the session provided an opportunity for women in the humanitarian sector to share their security concerns in a safe environment, with the aim of increasing their confidence around safety and security.

“The highlight was being in a room full of women who had so many experiences and stories to share related to the content we were delivering. It was good to hear about the specific challenges women had faced in the field and the ways that they had resolved these,” Meaghan said.

“In other humanitarian training courses, there’s often not a lot of space for reflection as they tend to focus on providing practical training. Safer Women provides practical tools and tips as well as addressing some of the security issues women face in a place they feel comfortable.” 

Safer Women seeks to provide women with a safety and security framework, and with tools and resources, to better self-manage their situation when working, travelling or living in volatile or dangerous contexts.

The course is a two-day program and will run on March 14–15 in 2019. Register for Safer Women now at https://www.redr.org.au/training/humanitarian-training/our-courses/safer-women-security-awareness-training/