Diana’s Story: An Argentinian Survivor Speaks Out
From the Argentine province of Chaco, 48-year-old mother of seven, Diana suffered for 28 years before finally deciding to separate from her abusive partner.
“I wasn’t afraid that he would beat me, I was convinced that he would kill me,” she said.
At first, she hesitated to file a police complaint for fear of how he might react, but as she learned more about the services provided by a local shelter, she realized that she could escape her tormentor. She also decided to press charges.
Living with an abusive father, her children also suffered psychological stress and economic hardship.
Leaving was not easy, but with the support of social workers, a local shelter and a safe space to recover, Diana got a job as an administrative assistant in a municipal office.
“I admit that it was difficult, but with the [mental health] support, legal aid and skills training, I healed a lot,” she explained.
Essential services for survivors of domestic violence are a lifeline.
“I no longer feel like a prisoner, cornered, or betrayed. There are so many things one goes through as a victim, including the psychological [persecution] but now I know that I can accomplish whatever I set my mind to”.
Diana is among 199 women survivors housed at a shelter affiliated with the Inter-American Shelter Network, supported by UN Women through the Spotlight Initiative in Latin America. The shelter has also provided psychosocial support and legal assistance to more than 1,057 women since 2017.
Diana’s full story is here.
Accelerate gender equality
- Violence against women and girls is preventable.
- Comprehensive strategies are needed to tackle root causes, transform harmful social norms, provide services for survivors and end impunity.
- Evidence shows that strong, autonomous women’s rights movements are critical to thwarting and eliminating VAWG.