Photo of Ilana Hutchinson with the other panellists.
Our Outreach and Prevention team were honoured to attend the, 'It's #About Time: A Whole School Approach to Ending Violence Against Women and Girls’ report launch, hosted by the End Violence Against Women Coalition at the Palace of Westminster, Houses of Parliament on 12th June 2023.

Our Schools Manager, Ilana Hutchinson, was invited to be on a panel of experts representing Jewish Women’s Aid as an educator taking part in the AVA Healthy London Healthy Relationships Programme in Schools.  

The event launched the report and sparked conversation about the Whole School Approach in preventing violence against women and girls, in educational settings. The panel was chaired by Kim Leadbeater MP, who made the welcome address and Andrea Simon, Director of EVAW. Panellists included, Professor Vanita Sundaram, co-author of the, EVAW 'It's #About Time' report, who discussed the case for a Whole School Approach in schools. 

Ilana spoke about the importance of having a specialist violence against women and girls' sector, including specialists like Jewish Women’s Aid to partner with schools on prevention education. She spoke alongside Michaela Queensborough from AVA who introduced the work of the Healthy London Healthy Relationships programme and Jennifer Moses from NASUWT, the Teacher's Union.

Ilana said, "VAWG specialists need to approach schools with partnership, shared vision and goals. We must meet young people where they are, and meet schools where they are. Standalone classes are not enough: we need longer term engagement with the specialist by and for sector, to facilitate conversations even when it's uncomfortable, especially with boys. We know tick boxes don't work: we need to change attitudes and have cultural shifts. " 

EVAW commented, "Violence against women and girls is endemic in our society. Schools are a critical site for the protection of children and young people… there are alarming levels of sexual violence and sexual harassment in our schools.., it has been deemed a national crisis".

It was a privilege to be invited to debate these matters in parliament, we hope that this report is the start of change. We are proud of our work using the Whole School Approach to educate and inform young people, their parents and teachers on healthy relationships and consent in schools. For more information on this please click here