At GLI, we specialise in helping men and boys to contribute to improving gender relations.
The core of our approach is positive - we reach out to individuals and groups to offer them unique opportunities to make a difference to issues that are new to them. We believe men (and everyone) can make a contribution to positive changes in their communities and broader society. We show them that they can do more than meet the minimum standards of their society, but can also support and promote change in their communities.
Mainly we run workshops. All of our workshops are interactive, respectful and confidential.
The are interactive so that people can learn at their own pace, rather than sit through a lecture. They are respectful so that each person can reflect on their own lives and the world they live in, to learn, and to decide what sort of contribution they would like to make. They are confidential so that participants can share without fear of judgement and experiment with challenging ideas. Our programs create opportunities to experiment, to fail without judgement, and to learn skills, attitudes and approaches that will allow them to change their behaviours in the future.
Our Workshops Are Events. Moments for people to question and reflect.
Participant feedback shows that the majority of individuals enjoy this forum - a rare chance to open up and discuss sensitive topics with their peers, to reflect on themselves, and to take a step towards positive change.
But more importantly, we design the workshops to be impactful, to change behaviours and attitudes. We start to build the attitudes and skills that can transform behaviours in our workplaces, schools, universities and society in general. We want to plant seeds of change in individuals, and to be part of the process of cultural and institutional transformation.
We understand that the problems we see in many parts of our communities around gender have complex causes. We try to work within this complexity, rather than ignore it.
While our focus is on gendered relationships, we realise that these can’t be neatly separated from other structures of our society, such as class, race, religion, age relations. We work with participants so they are aware of the complex overlaps between these categories.
We provide a robust decision making framework, which revolves. They practice it, so that they can begin to rely on it in sensitive situations.
Our workshops work with and through group dynamics. We also know that local norms of behaviour, or ideas of what it is to be a man can greatly influence people’s attitudes and behaviours. Our workshops reveal some of the unnecessary consequences of these norms, and provide space for groups to create new norms. They offer a space where teams, societies, classrooms, offices (etc.) can reflect on their norms, and create new ones. We find that this group effect can reinforce the changes experienced by individuals, well after the workshop is finished. For this reason, we run workshops with groups that include people of all genders when appropriate to the group, even though our core contribution and expertise is our work with men and boys.
We consult with participants and their peers to find out the issues that matter locally. We discuss issues that are relatable to them and their peers. We believe transformation work can begin with pragmatic solutions to local issues - that these can be pathways to larger societal transformations. Importantly, this involves working with groups who we don’t run workshops with, but might be affected by our participants’ actions.
We do confront participants with some harsh realities. But we know that people stop learning when they get into a defensive mode, so we provide a context in which they can absorb the information and reflect upon it, rather than react defensively.
It is crucial that we remain aware of the issues that matter - particularly the negative and unnecessary consequences of male attitudes and behaviours experienced by women. We draw attention to these consequences through statistics, anecdotes and multimedia presentations.The guiding principle is to make this information as “proximal and salient” to the context as possible - simply put, our workshops are about the contexts that our participants will recognise, even if they didn’t realise previously the issues existed.
Our workshops are Evidence Based.
We are constantly looking to improve our programs. We keep up to date with the latest innovations, and carefully monitor our impact to ensure that our work with you will be of the highest quality.
And perhaps most importantly, our workshops are led by facilitators who can relate to the groups that they’re working with. We invest in ongoing mentoring and advanced training for our facilitators.