K-P launches app to battle gender-based violence

Published: March 8, 2018
App is called KPCSW, named after Khyber Pakhtunkhwa Commission for the Status of Women. PHOTO: Express Tribune

App is called KPCSW, named after Khyber Pakhtunkhwa Commission for the Status of Women. PHOTO: Express Tribune

The Khyber-Pakhtunkhwa government on Thursday launched a new smartphone application to assist women experiencing gender-based violence and improve the services it offers via the Khyber Pakhtunkhwa Commission for the Status of Women (KPCSW).

The app, named KPCSW also works offline. It contains features like text, voice and video messages, and MMS, to help women report cases of violence. People can also access useful information regarding laws protecting women and how to approach KPCSW for help.

The app can be downloaded for free on Google Play Store.

KPCSW collaborated with Blue Veins and Trocaire Pakistan, nongovernmental organisations working for rights of the vulnerable community, as well as the Australian High Commission to build this app.

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In a press statement, Australian Deputy High Commissioner to Pakistan Brek Batley said eliminating violence against women everywhere is a priority of the Australian Government.

“It is a core part of our foreign policy and aid programme,” Batley said.

“We anticipate that this app will play a pivotal role in providing support services for survivors of gender-based violence, with information to access shelters, medical services or legal aid services,” the dignitary added.

“On International Women’s Day, we reflect on the critical contributions women make in every sector of society and we recommit ourselves to addressing the discrimination and barriers that women face around the world,” KPCSW Chairperson Neelam Toru was quoted as saying.

John O’Brien, Trócaire’s Country Director in Pakistan, also praised the innovative use of technology by the commission to support women and girls across K-P.

Qamar Naseem, the programme coordinator at Blue Veins, echoed O’Brien’s sentiments and said technology can be significant towards ending gender-based violence.

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“We are grateful to Trócaire for supporting this KPCSW the Android application, which will improve the commission’s presence in the cyber space,” he said, adding the app will also support KPCSW to effectively respond to the needs of women.

“Women have come a long way when it comes to empowerment but a lot needs to be done,” Meraj Hamayun Khan, MPA and chairperson for Women Parliamentary Caucus (WPC), said.

“Awareness campaigns and events like these have started sensitising people on the rights of women throughout the province.”

The WPC chair said women empowerment is essential to human development and plays a pivotal role in eradicating poverty, “building resilient societies, economies and promoting sustainable development.”

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