Ms. Fatema Khatun has been working as a Welfare Officer at a garment factory called Comfit Composite Knit Ltd. for the last two years. Her job responsibilities include looking after the female workers and their wellbeing, finding out if they have any grievances and giving advice to help them cope with or overcome issues they might be facing. She has been trained as a trainer under the Working with Women – Phase II project as a para counselor and she finds that this training has helped her work effectively with the issues she faces with garments workers.
Before this training, Fatema was unaware of the concept of mental health and how severely one’s mental health can be affected by gender-based violence. Through this training, Fatema can now effectively provide help to anyone suffering mental pressures. For instance, she once had to provide counselling to a worker who missed work for twenty days due to gender-based violence. The worker came to work with a bruised arms, neck and face and informed Fatema that she had suffered the assault in the hands of her husband and had to flee from home, fearing for her life. Fatema was able to help the worker resume her job and provide her the mental support she needed to get her life back on track. Fatema hopes that she will be able to help people better in the future as now she has proper understanding of this concept and knows the tools to deal with gender-based violence, sexual harassment and related mental health issues.