A smiling man together with three children looking in to the camera.
Fact Sheet

Transforming masculinites in Cambodia

28 September, 2021

In a country where over 30 percent of the women reported they had experienced physical, sexual, emotional or economic violence from a partner in their lifetime, Diakonia is working to change negative stereotypes of masculinity. With our project Transformative Masculinity in Cambodia, we present a tool to make patriarchal structures visible and engage men in the fight for gender justice.

Dominant forms of masculinity are often associated with gender-based violence, oppression of women and girls and dangerous sexual and reproductive practices.

Domestic violence is a widespread problem in Cambodia. Patriarchal structures and traditional norms in society are deeply rooted. Although domestic violence is prohibited by law, it is often considered a private matter, and many women subjected to violence therefore do not seek legal or medical help.

Diakonia is promoting transformative masculinities as a tool to make patriarchal structures visible and engage men in the fight for gender justice. To act for gender equality and justice we see the need for more men and boys to form alliances with women’s rights organisations and join grassroots movements that reject violence and discrimination of women, girls and LGBTI persons.

“I have almost changed all my bad behaviour after joining the project, including controlling my anger. Now I do household chores. I am very happy now and I do not commit violence in the family in any form”, says Soeb Sokha who joined the project. Now he organizes group discussions with the people in his village. He also intervenes in cases of domestic violence and contacts local authorities when needed.

Download our fact sheet about Transformative Masculinity to find out more about how we work, and read some of the stories from the men who joined the project.