Since its creation in 2011, the AEIF or Alumni Engagement Innovation Fund has already funded 4 innovative projects of Malagasy alumni. As a reminder, the AEIF is a global competition organized by the Bureau of Educational and Cultural Affairs of the U.S. Department of State. Having participated in the program, it was natural for Marie Christina KOLO to compete with the support of 4 friends and fellow Alumni.

In 2020, the Women Break The Silence Project initiated by the team won the competition. They thus became the 5th Malagasy team to receive funding. Officially launched in January 2021, the project has now become a Movement which is an initiative of young people sensitive to the issue of gender-based violence in Madagascar. The adoption of the law n°2019-009 relating to the fight against gender-based violence in December 2019 sent a strong signal concerning the hardening of the law against the facts of violence in any kind. However, it must be noted that regardless of the legislation, social practices tend to prevail over the collective consciousness than the texts of laws.

Our mission

The Women BreaK The Silence initiative was born out of a desire to directly involve survivors of violence in raising awareness and combating rape culture in Madagascar.The US Embassy in Madagascar helped us organize a small launch event on December 4, 2020 with a series of qualified alumni from various US programs (YVLP, Humphrey, YALI, Fullbright) working on gender-based violence.

Thanks to this first meeting, we obtained a lot of new ideas at the beginning of our initiative but also new perspectives and new advice to enrich the project. We add to our objectives the fight against sexual harassment at all levels (not only in schools and universities) and the inclusion of women with disabilities. We also changed the original organizational structure when we realized that it was more efficient to let each branch of the association be autonomous and create its own activities.

Within a few months, nitiative became a major national movement on the issue. It has helped to shed light on violence and discrimination in the victim support system, as well as the lack of support. The Movement now spans several territories and collaborates with public authorities as well as the private sector. Indeed, in response to demand and opportunities, Women Break The Silence has even been able to expand through several partnerships and new events not initially planned.

We were also fortunate to collaborate with associations and artists who gave us discounted prizes as partners and we were able to add many more actions. However, the initiative encountered many challenges that we had not foreseen, including political pressure and institutional violence that we had to manage.

Our Aims

Women Break the Silence aims to help and support victims to move from being victims to being survivors while reinforcing its main mission of fighting against rape culture by raising awareness through artistic, educational and cultural channels.

We also plan to create shelters for victims of gender-based violence. This first trial is mainly aimed at several large cities in the country, notably Antananarivo, the capital, Tamatave and Nosy Be, as well as Diego Suarez, the epicenter cities of the sexual rape phenomenon in Madagascar.

Our Actions


Our Partners

Some of our partners were there from the beginning, others have joined us in the fight; we are proud to work with all of them. In addition, other partners will be joining us soon...

Women Break The Silence Madagascar
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