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Support for Action Research on Males’ Perspectives on Gender and Family Violence

The Filipino Men and Domestic Violence Project (MENDOV) was meant to address the question: If men are often the sources of physical violence, why are they excluded from domestic violence programs? The project was carried out for 24 months (1998 August – 2000 July) in the cities of Davao and Iloilo and in adjoining rural communities. Originally planned as a purely research undertaking, the project’s scope was widened to include a social intervention component. The research component took 10 months of the project’s two-year duration. It sought to understand the context of men’s roles as sources of violent behavior. It investigated men’s perceptions, attitudes, experiences, and feelings concerning marriage, family life, interpersonal conflict and violence, and behavioral change. The project’s social intervention component was completed in five months. The intervention involved a month-long cycle of workshops and a follow-up visit to men’s communities and work places three weeks after the workshops. It was recommended that program implementers seriously consider the “ecological theory to men’s violence” to address the problem of violence. The “ecological theory to men’s violence” recognizes that society as a macro-system has a powerful and large-scale influence in the perpetuation of domestic violence. The macro-system consists of the sub-systems of family, religion, politics, business, medicine, law, mass media, and education. In each sub-system, individuals exist in a hierarchy of formal and informal social positions. Program implementers can use the systemic approach to examine these sub-systems and their core stakeholders and to understand how these can be mobilized for domestic violence prevention.


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