Overcoming Violence

Stories of Gender Based Violence

Karla R. Lemus Barrios

Activist

Karla R. Lemus Barrios

-Working against violence against women requires that you forget the word “job” and rather say: “This is what I do, this is who I am”, says Karla, who for more than 20 years has fought against gender based violence in Guatemala. 

As a coordinator for the women’s organization Grupo Guatemalteco de Mujeres (GGM) Karla is working to extinguish violence against women in Guatemala. She emphasizes that a coherent approach to gender based violence is necessary. – Many think that violence against women is passed from one generation to the next, but we have to look at the overall picture, she says and tells that GGM works with churches, schools and other social institutions in order to change structures that oppress women.

As coordinator in the Women’s organization GGM Karla works towards extinguishing violence against women at all levels of society.
As coordinator in the Women’s organization GGM Karla works towards extinguishing violence against women at all levels of society.

Fighting violence against women in Guatemala is challenging, and Karla tells that GGM’s employees experience resistance because they are feminists. – To be a feminist is to be expelled from society, she says. – But being a feminist is also a possibility to make our country prosper. It is a personal choice. Do I want to be a looser, or do I want to be one of the architects of a society in transition?

Karla is working for discussions about gender-based violence to be included in the lecturing in universities and other educational institutions.
Karla is working for discussions about gender-based violence to be included in the lecturing in universities and other educational institutions.

Karla is dedicated to the thought of shaping a better Guatemala. – I have three nieces, and I want for them to live in a world where there is no need to experience this. I fancy knowing that at least I did a little effort towards a society where none of them have to experience gender based violence.

-It is possible to get rid of violence against women, Karla says.
-It is possible to get rid of violence against women, Karla says.
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