Dear readers,

We hope you enjoy this second ‘No Mas, No More’ newsletter, to which all islands contributed generously. In this newsletter, you will find no fewer than 13 great contributions on a variety of topics touching on child abuse and domestic violence and all kinds of training, awareness and empowerment activities leading to more knowledge, skills, and resilience.

This newsletter offers interesting information about successful campaigns in Curaçao and Bonaire against risky and unacceptable behaviour and domestic violence and a new study on parenting styles and domestic violence in the Dutch Caribbean. It also highlights great projects in Aruba, Sint Maarten, Saba and Sint Eustatius that make ‘domestic violence and child abuse’ discussable and call citizens to action.

We wish you a pleasurable read!

Working Group No Mas No More
New ‘No Mas, No More’ working conference in 2023 to be held in Curaçao

The coming ‘No Mas, No More’ working conference will take place in Curaçao at the end of October 2023 and will again be accessible physically as well as online. This will make the conference widely accessible and give participants the opportunity to follow it from behind their desks. The ‘No Mas, No More’ working group is currently working hard on the conference program which will again be very interesting. The working group hopes that the conference will be as big a success as it was in previous years.

Interesting conference topics on the agenda

Although the topics for the conference are not yet finalized, we are happy to offer you a sneak preview of topics that will certainly be on the program. The new ‘No Mas, No More’ conference will pay attention to the sexual education of children and young people and various forms of sexual abuse, such as falling into the hands of lover boys, sexual violence within relationships and young girls earning money through sex for their phone credit and other expenses.

In addition, the topics of teenage mothers and teenage parents, poverty and domestic violence will also be addressed, as well as how professionals deal with their own past and how they integrate these experiences into their work.

In addition to the Ministry of VWS, all islands are represented in the ‘No Mas, No More’ working group. The working group cooperates closely with the Children’s Rights Taskforce.

The conference will pay attention to the sexual education of children and young people and various forms of sexual abuse.

New project manager ‘Temporary house injunction order’ introduces herself

On August 1st, 2022, Sara Etty started her job as project manager and kwartiermaker ‘Temporary house injunction order’ on domestic violence and child abuse’. The project is funded by the Ministry of Justice and Security, the Ministry of Health, Welfare and Sports and the Ministry of the Interior and Kingdom Relations and implemented in close cooperation with the public entities on the BES islands.

Sara will be working on Saba for three months, after that on Sint Eustatius for another three months and finally on Bonaire for a period of nine months. After three months on Saba, Sara now lives on Sint Eustatius with her big black Labrador ‘Loulou’. In this article she expands on her new job and background.

The assessment is made based on several signs we see in the person of the perpetrator, the course of the incident and the family situation.

Working with a restraining order in the event of imminent danger

The temporary house injunction order has been in force as a law in the Netherlands since 2009. I will now examine how a similar law and corresponding approach to domestic violence and child abuse can take shape on the islands.

A temporary house injunction order is an administrative safety measure. It is a power of the mayor – here the governor – that can be deployed when there is (a serious suspicion of) serious and immediate danger or a serious suspicion of the threat of danger due to domestic violence and child abuse. Since this is an administrative measure, the danger must be made plausible. It does not have to be proven as in criminal law.

Working with the extension of a restraining order when the situation worsens

When the measure is triggered, the mayor is obliged to offer help to all concerned. This help is voluntary. In the Netherlands, there is a 10-day period during which the perpetrator is not allowed to enter or near the home, nor contact the person(s) left behind in any way. If the perpetrator does so, it is a criminal offence. If safety does not improve sufficiently or even worsens within those 10 days, the temporary house injunction order can be extended for an additional 18 days, taking al facts and circumstances into account from the present and the past.

Although the law, as it applies in the Netherlands, serves as an example, the islands can opt for an adapted form of regulation. Moreover, since 2015, the Istanbul Convention on Violence against Women and Domestic Violence has been in force, which includes the necessary provisions on what a temporary house injunction order should look like. For the islands, the Convention does not yet apply, but we are working towards ratification.

Working on the development and implementation of legislation in the Netherlands

The temporary house injunction order has been an important part of my work in tackling domestic violence and child abuse for many years. For instance, I was involved in the development of the order by the Ministry of Justice and Security in the Netherlands and carried out the implementation of the law in Rotterdam. I then spent 14 years in Rotterdam further developing this law. I studied law in Nijmegen at the Radboud University. Eventually, I specialized in International and European human rights and family law with a focus on violence.

Working on new legislation in the Caribbean islands

It feels very special to me to now play a role on the islands in initiating a temporary house injunction order. Just like so long ago in the Netherlands, but with the knowledge and experience I have obtained in the past years. People are working hard on the islands to tackle domestic violence with a lot of passion and enthusiasm, but it remains a difficult task.

It is possible that the temporary house injunction order will strengthen existing cooperation in tackling domestic violence and child abuse, because you cannot do it alone. To combat domestic violence, you need chain partners who jointly use their information, capabilities, and powers to execute an appropriate plan. Experience in the Netherlands shows that a temporary House injunction order can function as an accelerator even if it is only one of the instruments available within the approach.

For questions, comments, or ideas, feel free to mail Sara at

Curaçao: Conference on sex offences provides valuable tools

In October 2022, the Law Enforcement & Security Training Institute (ORV) organized a successful conference titled “The psychological impact of working with sex offenders on professionals “. This conference
focused on how the Law describes sex offences and what impact, from a criminological point of view, these offences have on society. During the conference, participants were given many valuable tools for their
own mental well-being.

The ORV institute provides education, training and guidance to police officers and other employees working in various fields within the chain of justice. Among other things, the institute organizes conferences. The ORV institute focusses the subject of ‘Sex offences’ in its basic and advanced education and takes the legal as well as the social aspects of these matters onto account. In October 2022 it organized a successful conference on the topic of ‘sex offences’.

Multiple objectives

Key objectives of this conference were:

1. Exchanging knowledge and experience, which could be applied in working with sex offenders.
2. Providing tools that could contribute positively to the mental well-being of professionals working with sex offenders and their victims.

Professionals from different disciplines came together at this conference to get informed about the topic of ‘Sex Offences’ and the major impact that working with sex offenders can have on their mental well-being. In addition, the conference focused on how professionals could best deal with the impact of these sex offence cases on their victims.

Focus on Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD)

Offering different coping strategies promotes the mental strength of professionals to continue doing their jobs well. These strategies can prevent employees, who repeatedly counsel victims and sex crime offenders, from suffering from PTSD them selves. The conference highlighted this topic from a psychological-, criminological- and legal point of view and from the experiences of a practitioner.

The ORV institute is tasked with training professionals in the justice chain. In the future it will therefore offer more conferences and short-term workshops to promote the further development of justice chain professionals.

“Teenagers find the topic
of sexuality very interesting.
They are challenged

to think critically, and they do.””

Ministry of Social Development, Labour and Welfare (SOAW) Xochitl Gerard

Curaçao: Curaçao awareness campaign ‘Sendé ta kosiente’ for high school students extended

Sendé……ta konsiente’ is an awareness campaign, which was introduced in Curaçao in 2019. Due to its huge success, the campaign was continued and slightly modified in terms of content and name. Nowadays, the campaign is run year-round to meet the high demand for preventive education from the secondary education sector. The campaign focuses on high school students and brings attention to subjects such as excessive and illegal drug use, alcohol use, school violence and sexually abusive behaviour.

Many chain partners involved

The campaign team consists of representatives from the Ministry of Justice, the Public Prosecutor’s Office (OM), The Ambulatory Judicial Youth Care Curaçao Foundation, the Ministry of Health Environment and Nature (GMN), Fundashon Maneho pa Adikshon, The Victim Support Foundation Curaçao and the Ministry of Social Development, Labour and Welfare (SOAW). The campaign is funded by the Public Prosecutor’s Office (OM) and the Ministry of Justice.

The awareness campaign, aimed at high school students, was introduced back in 2019 under the name “Sendé?! … gosa sigur!”. The campaign focused on subjects such as excessive and illegal drug use, alcohol consumption and sexually abusive behaviour during the carnival period. Multidisciplinary teams engaged in interactive information sessions with students to talk about these subjects, which went very well.

Ministry of Health, Environment and Nature (GMN). Pharetza Bertad – Damon BSc.
“ I see how, in the safe environment of their own educational institution, we empower young people to make conscious and healthy choices in their sexual development.”

Ambulatory Foundation Judicial Youth Care Curaçao (AJJC) Margeline Vrutaal
“ Aggression and peer pressure’ are issues young people face every day.’

New theme, new campaign name

Due to its huge success, the campaign was relaunched in 2021. Because of the Covid-19 pandemic and the fact that Carnival could not take place, the campaign was not executed during the usual Carnival period that year. In the meantime, the Sendé team revamped the campaign. The campaign is now run all year round, given the high demand from the secondary education sector. A new subject ’School Violence’ has been added to the campaign because of the rise in school fights and threats.

The campaign’s name and logo have also been adapted to “Sendé … ta konsiente!”. The slogan uses the word “sendé”, a “slang term” often used among young people. For an international translation of the word “sendé”, think of the word “lit” often used by young people. “Ta konsiente” is a warning, namely, “Beware!”. Konsiente literally means aware. This campaign offers young people tools to do the right thing. In addition, the pun with “ta konsiente” is also a point of attention: “that their choice, is a conscious choice, which they themselves have chosen”.

Own choices, own responsibility

The primary aim of the campaign is to raise awareness among high school students about the dangers of drug use, alcohol use and sexually risky behaviour. Sub-themes within the campaign include ‘Being drugged by a third party through undetected drugs put in you drink’, ‘Drinking dangerous alcohol combinations’, ‘The effects of these substances and other drugs and the criminal consequences of ones own actions and choices.’

Introduction of the Sendé Challenge

The awareness campaign uses a nice mix of educational tools, which support and reinforce each other. This year fifteen schools signed up for the “Sendé Challenge”. Students from these schools were challenged to develop an awareness-raising video in the form of a rap, a song, a poem, a story or a play, using their own specific talents and skills.

In this video, they demonstrate what they learned during the campaign sessions of “Sendé … ta konsiente!”. All video presentations will be presented on the Sendé … ta konsiente’s Facebook page in April 2023. The challenge aims at encouraging each other, motivating each other and promoting and discussing these difficult topics between students themselves.

If you want to keep up to date with all the developments surrounding the ‘Sendé … ta konsiente!’ campaign, ‘like’ our Facebook page: ‘sendetakonsiente’.

Fundashon pa Maneho di Adikshon (FMA) Solivienne Cathalina

“ We view the project ‘Sendé …ta konsiente!’ as a great experience on how we can achieve more together.”

Curaçao Police Force (KPC) The prevention team of KPC

“ The police work not only to repress but also to prevent. Students find it exciting and interesting when we visit their classroom and are full of questions.”

St. Maarten: Pilot project ‘Self-defence for women’ launched on St Maarten

As part of 16 days of activities to combat violence against women and girls, the Women’s Desk of Sint Maarten initiated a unique pilot project called ‘Basic self-defence training for women’. It did this in response to the increasing number of violent crimes committed against women on Sint Maarten. With this project, the Women’s Desk aims to empower women on Sint Maarten, with the hope that the training can be permanently embedded in the organization’s empowerment program in the future. 

The Women’s Desk is a section within the Department of ‘Community Development, Family & Humanitarian Affairs’ which is part of de Ministry of Public Health, Social Development & Labour. It launched the ‘Basic self-defense training for women’ pilot in partnership with the Sint Maarten High-Performance Education Institute (SHEI), as SHEI has a wealth of judicial knowledge and a team of highly qualified self-defense trainers with 4- and 6-degree black belts.

Working on a powerful relationship with your own body

Research on women’s rights and gender equality, commissioned by the European Parliament, shows that ‘self defence training’ can contribute to the implementation of Article 12 of the Istanbul Convention. Self-defense challenges the idea of vulnerable, timid femininity and helps women and girls build a powerful relationship with their own bodies.

Self-defense challenges the idea of vulnerable, timid femininity and helps women and girls build a powerful relationship with their own bodies.

The pilot project targets fifteen women aged 18 to 59 years, who are in good health and live on Sint Maarten. The project, which is offered free of charge, started on November 3rd in 2022 and will run for 3 months. The training is formally certified, allowing participants to advance to the next level if they wish.

Promoting the value of self-defense training

The basic ‘Self-defense’ training offers women an additional tool to help them avoid becoming victims of physical violence. During the training, participants are offered a combination of strength training, basic techniques from martial arts, judo, and jiujutsu. This training allows them to react more consciously and confidently to a physical attack and defend themselves better against such attacks.

Self-defense training for women can prevent violence against women. It is therefore important to recognize and promote this insight to policy makers and civil society organizations in the EU and member states, and to relevant Council of Europe committees such as GREVIO. The Women’s Desk hopes that the pilot ‘Basic self-defense training for women’ will become one of the empowerment programs, which all women of Sint Maarten will be able to join through the Women’s Desk.

Empowerment activities

In the past year, Saba has organized many activities and projects to combat bullying behaviour, empower women and children and set up support groups in combatting child abuse and domestic violence. In the overview below, we will highlight six successful initiatives for children and adults.

Saba: New empowerment activities on Saba for children and adults


Anti-bullying week

In 2022, Saba concluded that bullying behaviour was getting worse. To combat bullying, the Safety Network called on all its stakeholders to contribute to addressing this problem. During April, May and June 2022, the Public Entity of Saba (OLS) fulfilled a pioneering role in countering bullying behaviour. Together with all its stakeholders, the OLS implemented a package of measures to combat bullying behaviour on the island.

First up was an Anti-Bullying Week where awareness activities were organized throughout the week in all classes at Sacred Heart school to combat bullying behaviour. After school, students who attended the afterschool club were encouraged in a fun and interactive way to further sharpen their knowledge on bullying. The week ended with each class performing for the community.

Anti-bullying training for professionals and parents

After that Aruban trainer Shurman Christoffel-Lee of Telefon pa Hubentud Aruba conducted the training ‘No mas termento na Scol ‘ for about 50 to 70 professionals and parents on Saba. This training focused on recognizing and addressing bullying behaviour. From this training, a working group was formed that will start an after-training program from January 2023 onwards.

Among other things, this follow-up project will introduce an anti-bullying program in schools and include parents and youth groups in the process. First, a survey will be held, in which the Saba community will be allowed to indicate what it thinks of the developments regarding bullying behaviour on Saba and the best approach to combat this. In addition, an anti-bullying protocol for Saba will be developed.


Children’s help line ‘Guana Chat’

On June 28th, 2022, the children’s help line on Saba was launched. This launch coincided with a period when efforts were already being made to tackle bullying behaviour on Saba. The arrival of the ‘Guana Chat’ was very positively received by Saba’s society, with all kinds of groups within the community being well informed about the installation of this helpline for children and young people aged 8 to 21.

Focus on children’s rights and high-quality family time

Saba devotes attention to Children’s Rights Week every year in the month of November. In 2022 the week kicked off on 19 November with a talent show, set up in cooperation with UNICEF. Earlier this year, the project ‘Quality time for parents and kids’, was also launched on Saba and Sint Eustatius. This project emphasizes the importance of parents making time for their children.

During the Children’s rights week, quality time and healthy child development were once again the central focus.


Honoring female entrepreneurs

In March 2022, a project specifically for women was launched, titled ‘Women empowerment’. On March 8th, about 150 to 200 women participated in a large empowerment event. During this event, small independent female entrepreneurs were given a painting by a local female entrepreneur. Other prizes, which were handed out, were also gifted by female entrepreneurs on Saba. After this activity, participating women were added to a network of an existing working group.

Support groups for women and men

Several activities are planned for this local women’s group in 2023, including the setting up of support groups for women experiencing domestic violence and child abuse. Moreover, a men’s group will also be launched in relation to these issues.

Successful activities

In the months of November and December 2022, Statia’s ‘Social Support Unit’ (USS), together with the ‘Family Coordinator Domestic Violence and Child Abuse’, organized several well-attended events for single mothers. These events, such as a cocktail party, a make-up workshop and a family day were evaluated very positively by the target group that would like to see these events continued.

St. Eustatius: Successful activities for single mothers on Statia

Platform for single mothers

The Unit’s first events took place from November 3 rd to November 6th in 2022 and targeted single mothers. During that period a cocktail party, a make-up workshop and a family day were organized. Through these events, the Unit aims to create a platform and support groups where single mothers can come together and exchange information on the various issues and challenges they may face in their daily lives.

Cocktail party with psychosocial education

On November 3rd, the Social Support Unit organized a cocktail party for single mothers on Statia titled ‘High Heels, Pink Lips, Afro Curls and Cocktail Sip. At this party, Ijolene Constantia, a psychologist and owner of River Psychologen & Adviesbureau in Curaçao, and Magaly Maduro, director of the women’s shelter in Aruba, addressed the single mothers. Ijolene talked about Stockholm Syndrome and the cycle of abuse and Maghaly talked about self-love and empowerment. Discussing these topics as a form of psycho-social education is the first important step towards a non-violent community, where single mothers support each other and know where they can access more professional help.

‘Natural, Beautiful, You!’

Through this workshop we wanted to increase self-esteem and self-love amongst single mothers.

Make-up workshop centered around self-love and self-esteem

On November 4th, the Unit organized a make-up workshop for 20 single mothers. The event was themed ‘Natural, Beautiful, You!’ Through this workshop, the Unit wanted to increase self-esteem and self-love amongst single mothers.

Family day on healthy and happy living

On November 6th, the Unit concluded their event series for single mothers with a family day, themed ‘A healthy life is a happy life’. The aim of the day was to encourage single mothers to take good care of themselves and their children and stay fit.

St. Eustatius: Intensive ‘domestic violence’ workshop for Statian healthcare professionals

On November 4th, 2022, Sint Eustatius’ Social Support Unit organized a ‘Domestic Violence’ workshop for professionals, who work with children, adults, and elderly people. These professionals play a very important role in identifying and preventing domestic violence. The workshop, which covered a wide range of relevant domestic violence topics, was perceived as very valuable by all local participating healthcare professionals.

Ijolene Constantia, a psychologist and owner of River Psychologen & Adviesbureau in Curaçao, and Magaly Maduro, director of the women’s shelter in Aruba co-hosted this workshop, which was highly interactive and very intensive. Ijolene addressed the group on the circle of abuse, Stockholm syndrome, child abuse, safety planning and much more. In addition, Magaly Maduro talked about the perpetrators of domestic violence, whom she treats in her shelter, and the importance of a shelter for the victims of domestic violence.

Workshop with a highly interactive and very intensive approach.

Extraordinary response from all involved

The Social Support Unit received exceptionally good feedback from all participating professionals about the activities organized and is happy to continue organizing such events in the near future.

What does Statia’s Social Support Unit do and why?

Specific focus on the elderly, single mothers, and men

This year and next year Statia’s Social Support Unit (USS) will be focusing on three specific target groups, namely single mothers, men and Statia’s elderly. For the men, the unit is planning an event next year, but starting this year, they are already involving some key male figures from the community in current events as a start-up for the event, which will take place in 2023.

Working on community-wide resilience

The overall aim of Statia’s Social Support Unit is to provide the citizens of the Statian Community with all the opportunities that life has to offer so that everyone can achieve their full potential. The Social Support Unit aims to enable citizens of the Statian Community to develop to their fullest potential in interaction with their social environment and according to their own nature, needs and beliefs, considering all others with whom they form a community.

Dual purpose empowerment activities and workshops

Through its empowerment activities and workshops touching on the subjects of ‘Domestic Violence and Child Abuse’, the Social Support Unit primarily aims to raise awareness around these issues and show the community how they themselves can strengthen their resilience, which is a natural virtue of Statian citizens. Secondly, the Social Support Unit wants to further promote its services around the issue of domestic violence and highlight its additional services through which it provides practical and psychosocial help to clients through a holistic approach.


On November 25th, the global day for the elimination of violence against women, Statia’s Social Support Unit organized a Flash mob parade for the Statian community, encouraging the whole community to speak out against domestic violence, as doing nothing is not an option. The parade, titled ‘A Call to action’ consisted of about 150 people including children, dance groups, teenagers, the elderly marching along and female and male motorcyclists riding along.

St. Eustatius: Flash mob and opening shelter

Opening shelter for victims of domestic violence

On this day, which was internationally declared as the day for the elimination of violence against women, Statia’s own shelter was appropriately opened. The shelter provides protection and support to victims of domestic violence. It offers them a safe haven, where they can work on their resilience and make a fresh start, free of violence.

Statia honors Ingrid Whitfield as advocate against domestic violence

At the opening of the shelter, the shelter’s name was unveiled as being the “Ingrid Whitfield shelter”. Ingrid Whitfield is very well known within the Statian community, where she worked for years at the Women’s Desk. From that position, she helped many men and women, who were struggling with problems in their lives. Many of them faced domestic violence and were supported and empowered by Miss Whitfield. With this name, Statia honors a great member of her community, who for years fought for victims of domestic violence and child abuse.

Statia’s Social Support Unit encourages the whole community to speak out against domestic violence, because doing nothing is not an option.

New research

A healthy, safe and promising (growing up) environment for every child and adult on Bonaire, Sint Eustatius and Saba. That is what residents, professionals and policymakers jointly strive for. To realize this ambition, the ZJCN program directorate which is part of the Ministry of Health, Welfare and Sports (VWS) decided to commission a research study on parenting styles, domestic violence & child abuse in the Dutch Caribbean.

New research on parenting styles and domestic violence in the Caribbean


A healthy, safe and promising (growing up) environment for every child and adult on Bonaire, Sint Eustatius and Saba, that is what residents, professionals and policymakers jointly strive for. To realize this ambition, it is important to know how people view parenting and relationships. What are they content with and what can be improved?Where do opportunities for improvement lie? Answers to these questions are needed to provide insight into how the development and execution of policies can be strengthened.

Therefore, the program directorate ‘ZGCN’ which is part of the Ministry of Health, Welfare and Sports (VWS) decided to commission a research study on parenting styles, domestic violence & child abuse in the Dutch Caribbean. Leiden University, the University of Curaçao and UNICEF Netherlands will conduct this independent research in 2022/2023. This document sets out the purpose of the research and its research approach.


The purpose of this study is twofold:

1. To gain insight into the experience and attitudes of young people, parents and professionals towards parenting, domestic violence and child abuse on Bonaire, St Eustatius, and Saba by means of a base line study (nulmeting) on every island.
2. Based on the results of the research study, recommendations for policies and implementation will be made for each island. For example, on using preventive interventions, setting up targeted awareness campaigns and strenghtening provided services and facilities.


To align the research assignment with the specific context of each island, researchers will initiate a dialogue with the Public Entities and local partners of each island prior to the study. Based on these dialogue outcomes, the research approach can be fine-tuned. The study consists of the following components:

Desk research on the legal and policy context around parenting, child abuse and domestic violence in Caribbean context. And a pedagogical, sociological, anthropological, and historical exploration related to parenting, child abuse and domestic violence in the Caribbean.
Semi-structured in-depth interviews with young people, adults, and professionals.
Quantitative (baseline) measurement through an online survey with questions on parenting, domestic violence, and child abuse.
• Focus groups with young people, adults, and professionals.

For each island, in close coordination with the Public Entities, a group of (local) experts will be installed as a ‘klankbordgroep’ to assist the research team in its work.


• A final report in English and Dutch
• A final management summary in Papiamentu.
• A management summary in Dutch and English per island
• An infographic per island with key results
• A presentation per island of the main results
• A presentation of the overall results at the ‘No Mas, No More’ conference in October 2023.

The overall research question of this study is as follows:

What are the attitudes of young people, parents and professionals towards parenting, domestic violence and child abuse in Bonaire, St. Eustatius and Saba?


1. Preparation phase | October 2022 – January 2023
• Ethics committee review (covers privacy and data processing, am ongst other things).
• Preliminary discussions with stakeholders on the islands.
• Installation per island of an expert group (klankbordgroep).
• Working visits by UNICEF NL, Leiden University and the Universi ty of Curaçao (UoC) to all the islands.

2. Implementation phase | January – June 2023
• Desk research.
• Data collection through in-depth interviews, online surveys and focus groups.

3. Analysis and reporting phase | July – September 2023
• Analysis of the collected data.
• Delivery of the final report per island in English and Dutch.
• Delivery of the management summary in Papiamentu.
• Delivery of the infographics showing graphic results per island .

4. Dissemination phase | October – December 2023
• Sharing results, findings and recommendations.

Bonaire: New campaign about domestic violence and shame


The Public Entity of Bonaire (OLB) is drawing attention to domestic violence and child abuse through an intensive information campaign coordinated by the working group ‘Tei P’abo’. Through this campaign OLB aims to create awareness about these subjects and the shame that often surrounds them. The new campaign can prevent domestic violence and child abuse and point people in the direction of counselling and support.

Child abuse and domestic violence still surrounded by shame

The information campaign was created through a collaboration between various organizations on Bonaire. The working groups named ‘Tei P’abo’ and focuses on developing a joint campaign with a different main topic each year relating to domestic violence and child abuse. The focus of the current campaign is on the short film “Bergwensa”, which follows a family with two children. The film consists of four parts aired in the period September to November 2022. The film leads the viewer through the various problems the family experiences and how their surroundings react to them. The film portrays recognizable situations that anyone can find themselves in. In every part of the film, expressions of shame are demonstrated and explored in detail.

The film centers around Oscar, who lives with his mother and sister and is regularly dominated and humiliated by his mother. Consequently, Oscar tries to dominate other children at school and always attacks a girl named ‘Vienna’. The viewer witnesses the different emotions of each family member and their surroundings. Linda, Vienna’s sister, understands that there is more going on with Oscar and helps him talk about his problems. Eventually, Oscar’s mother realizes that something must change.

Create awareness about domestic violence and the shame that often surrounds it.

Four-part film ‘Bergwensa’

The film ‘Bergwensa’ consists of four parts.
Part 1 is about Oscar’s attack on Vienna.
Part 2 reveals more about Oscar’s home situation and how his mother tries to escape from her problems.
Part 3 shows how Oscar’s father struggles with the situation. He wants to play a bigger role in his family’s life but is not given a chance to do so. He is also afraid that his ex-wife will prohibit contact with his son, whom she uses as a weapon. He therefore finds it difficult to contact his son, whom he misses so much.
Part 4 is about the mother’s understanding that something really needs to change.

Talking about the role of fathers in Bonaire

After part 3 of video, that focuses on Oscar’s father, a special conversation took place between four different fathers about the father’s role in the family. This was done with the help of the four statements below, highlighting a father’s strength and vulnerability:

1. A child should always listen to his father.
2. A father is allowed to cry in front of his child.
3. A father should have a tough and strict approach towards parenting.
4. A father has a different caregiver’s role towards his child than a mother.

Using these statements, the fathers shared their opinions, feelings, and experiences. This created a great conversation in which these fathers shared experiences from their own childhood, their fathers role during their own childhood and their own role as a father.

They told each other that they had also learned not to cry, and that they became aware of this in their own role as fathers. They agreed that they were all human and that as human beings, men are also allowed to express feelings and cry in front of their children. The four fathers agreed that a child should be able to feel safe with his father and that it is important to spend time with your child. You don’t go to football matches with your child because you want to, but because your child wants you to. Their advice was formulated as following: ‘Take time to undertake activities with your child that he/she really likes.’

Click this link to watch the conversation between the four fathers.








Timely stop of escalation

An important campaign goal is to stop situations, which might escalate in time. In addition, the campaign focuses on strengthening the resilience of people who experience domestic violence, so that they themselves can change the unhealthy situation in which they find themselves. During the campaign two polls with questions and statements about domestic violence and child abuse were completed on social media.

Which organizations are part of the Tei P’abo working group?

The Public Entity of Bonaire (OLB) has formed a working group with different local support organizations to strengthen the information campaign on domestic violence, child abuse and shame. The working group carries the name ‘Tei P’abo’.

The following organizations are involved in this working group:
1. Public Entity Bonaire,
2. Sentro Akseso Boneiru,
3. ZGCN,
4. Probation Foundation,
5. Mental Health Caribbean,
6. Guardianship Council,
7. GP’s Support Practice.

Where can you find more information about the working group and the campaign?

On the websites below and their Facebook pages, you can find information about the content of the campaign and the film ‘Stop the beating’. The campaign can be followed for one whole year and will continue until September 2023.

Bonaire: Social media polls on male abuse

Two polls with a question and a statement were recently conducted on social media. The first question read “When do you consider something domestic violence? “ The second statement read “Male abuse is just as bad as female abuse”. Roxiana Goeloe and Femke Franckaert, two representatives and familiar faces from the Tei P’abo working group, discussed the reactions to these polls in their vlogs and explained how shame and domestic violence can relate to each other and how you can break away from that.

How bad is abuse of males?

More than 100 people responded to the poll statement, executed in four languages, about the abuse of males. In general, responders indicated that abuse of men is at least as bad or even worse than abuse of females and that this form of abuse is not or hardly ever addressed.

Abuse of men by women was said to occur more often on a psychological level and not so much on a physical leval. This makes men reluctant to come forward with their stories. Many responders indicated that any form of physical and mental mistreatment, be it of men, women or animals, is unacceptable and that every human being has a right to physical integrity.

View the graphic presentation of the poll results here.

Aruba: Art expressions in Aruba draw attention to child abuse and femicide

In 2022, numerous Aruban organizations proudly participated in the ‘16 Days of Activism against Gender Related Violence’. They joined forces to draw more attention to violence against women and girls with several special activities such as a play about child abuse and an art installation on femicide. At the start of the campaign, orange lights were lit on the Aruban Parliament building as a symbolic and luminous start to this special awareness campaign.

Aruban involvement in international campaign

The annual 16-day international campaign kicked off on November 25th on the International Day for the Elimination of Violence against Women and continues til December 10th, the International Human Rights Day. For 2022, Aruban organizations were proud to be part of the global ‘16 days to raise awareness’ campaign in an effort to end violence against women and girls in Aruba.

In Aruba, the following organizations took part in the campaign.
• The Foundation Against Relational Violence (Fundacion Contra Violencia Relacional) (FCVR),
• The International Jewish Humanitarian Organization providing vital services to refugees and asylum seekers in Aruba (HIAS Aruba),
• The Aruba branch of the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR) office,
• The Centre for the Development of Women (Centro di Desaroyo di Hende Muher) (CEDEHM).

Breaking taboos around child abuse

The campaign kicked off with Archell Thompson’s play ‘Stop the Beating’ performed at the John F. Kennedy Education Center for students and professionals. ‘Stop the Beating’ initiates conversations about child abuse in an open and nuanced way. The production highlights both the story of the victim and the perpetrator to better understand the patterns and structures surrounding child abuse. The aim of the play is to build understanding and insight into how child abuse occurs and how to break the cycle of violence and taboos.

Drawing attention to femicide

This was followed by the launch of an art installation called ‘She’s Gone’ by Israeli artist Keren Goldstein at the cultural center ‘Cas di Cultura’. The installation ‘She’s Gone’ protests against femicide, the killing of women and girls because of their gender. The installation consists of femicide victims’ clothes from different parts of the world.

These stories are silent testimonies of lives that came to an abrupt and violent end.

The clothes were donated by family members of the murdered women and girls and the stories of these women and girls are also shared. These stories are silent testimonies of lives that came to an abrupt and violent end. The installation has a strong impact on its viewers and creates more awareness about violence against women and girls.