Towards Re-visioning Shelter Homes

The action-research study of Shelter Homes for Survivors of Violence in North Karnataka was undertaken by Visthar and Sangama. This study is part of a five state research initiated in October 2017, undertaken by eight organizations in Delhi (Jagori, Action India, and Nazariya), Assam and Meghalaya (North East Network), Tamil Nadu (Ekta), and Karnataka (Vimochana, Visthar and Sangama). The collaborative Action-research is based on the experiences of female survivors of violence who are currently living, have lived or are at the risk of living in shelter homes. The study aimed at re-imagining shelter homes from a feminist framework, redefining homelessness as a socio-political process and intervening in the representation of women living in shelter homes as agents who engage in the process of knowledge production and change.

Objectives of the study included:

  • Enriching the existing body of knowledge around shelter homes and the women that approach them.
  • Gathering evidence on the current state of shelter homes, identifying gaps and advocating for improvements.
  • Enhancing perspectives and capacities of the participating organizations, former and current shelter home residents and the staff at shelter homes.
  • Recording survivors’ understanding about their experiences of violence to transform their perceptions of victimization.
  • Enhancing survivors’ knowledge and agency with respect to their rights and entitlements.

The report, “Towards Re-visioning Shelter Homes” presents the experience of survivors of violence in short-stay homes in North Karnataka and perceptions of heads of the institutions and other stakeholders. Despite the challenges of not having written permission from the Director, Women and Child Welfare and an air of mistrust and suspicion on the part of some, we were able to access several shelter homes, listen to the survivors and collect relevant data.

Read the Full Report…