You are on page 1of 2

Family Violence, Dating Violence and Migrant/Refugee Youth:

Mobilizing Culture Towards Non-violent Pathways


Summary Sheet
This research was conducted to ascertain the unique circumstances impacting young women and adolescent girls
from migrant backgrounds who may become ensnared in violent romantic and family relationships. The research
does not suggest Asian or Middle Eastern communities are particularly violent or patriarchal, but rather how violence
emanates in complex ways impacted by migration, age hierarchies, gender norms, racism, and poverty. We hope the
research is used responsibly to support community efforts to address intimate partner and family violence.
Developing an Intimate Partner Violence Prevention Curricula for Migrant Youth
David Tokiharu Mayeda, PhD
Raagini Vijaykumar, Student, Sociology and Law
We have been following rules for generations that our mum has
always been listening to dad. So someone goes out there and breaks
a rule, or saying something out loud, like No violence is bad, then
its not good. Women are forced not to go out there and say, I am
being hit by my husband. You take that as a daily routine.

...why does it have to be the women who learn


this stuff? Shouldnt the guys learn that they
shouldnt be doing this stuff? You have to target
the issue at the root, and its not the womans
job to always get out of a relationship.

- Indian High School Participant

- Chinese High School Participant

This project is based on small group interviews conducted with 11 adolescent girls and 16 young adult women from
Auckland of Asian and Middle Eastern backgrounds. Discussions focused on how young people define intimate
partner violence (IPV), where youth learn to normalise IPV, and how culture interfaces with IPV. The project provides recommendations on the development of youth programming that aims to prevent IPV with youth from these ethnic backgrounds. Among other things, the project suggests programming teach youth that IPV is not limited
to physical or verbal violence, but can also include a range of manipulative controlling behaviours, which sometimes reflect cultural elements tied to ethnicity.
David Mayeda, PhD, is a lecturer at The University of Auckland in the Disciplinary Area of Sociology.
Raagini Vijaykumar is a fourth year undergraduate student at The University of Auckland studying a Bachelor of Arts and Bachelor of Law.
Contact: d.mayeda@auckland.ac.nz | rvij072@aucklanduni.ac.nz

"Moving on": Structural Violence and Age(ncy) in the Lifeworlds of Shakti Youth Survivors of Family Violence
Mengzhu Fu, MA, Anthropology
Im still waiting. Its been more than 9 months Im waiting,
waiting for my PR. Thats why I cant study. I cant work. Sometimes they need residents people to work in New Zealand. So
many interviews I did, they said, Oh we dont want visa ones
cause we want permanent, we want PR people. We need citizens, residents people who can live here, who can work.

If I was just in Pakistan, if I wouldnt have come over


here, if my family was perfect, I wouldnt have understood the deep meaning of life, you know. I wouldnt
have understood my own existence. Im very conscious about myself now. So, although it has bad
points, Im very enriched in experience.

- Rahilah, Fiji-Indian, 19-years-old

- Aphrodite, Pakistani, 26-years-old

"Moving on": Structural Violence and Age(ncy) in the Lifeworlds of Shakti Youth Survivors of Family Violence
Mengzhu Fu, MA, Anthropology
This presentation summarizes an ethnographic study conducted with young adult survivors of family violence of
South Asian ancestries. In particular, the study is focused on the processes by which participants were able to reshape and redefine their lives while having to negotiate broad structural constraints tied to immigration, age hierarchies, racism, sexism and poverty. Findings from the study describe ways that women are able to bond with each
other within refuge settings as they all transition out of abusive relationships, finding solidarity through sharing of
food and experiences. Survivors lives post-crisis were often characterized by ongoing emotional harassment from
their ex-families, social isolation, loneliness, poverty, unemployment, housing and immigration insecurity. Recommendations from the study call for more long-term support for young women and for feminist movements to continue to challenge structural violence.
Mengzhu Fu is the youth project co-ordinator at Shakti Legal Advocacy and Family Social Services Inc. working to prevent family violence in Asian, Middle Eastern and African communities by mobilising migrant and refugee youth. She is a 2015 graduate
from The University of Auckland with a MA in Social Anthropology.
Contact: youth@shakti.org.nz

Increasing Social Connections for Young Migrant Women in the New Zealand Community Using Video Self Modeling
Sehar Moughal, MSc, Psychology
This study is based on an intervention implemented with three young women of migrant backgrounds who were in
the process of recovering from violent partnerships. Termed video self-modeling, the intervention entailed having research participants view themselves (on video) in conversation with the researcher (Sehar). Then they were asked to
have a conversation with University Psychology students from different ethnic backgrounds. The videos were edited in
a way to make it look as if the participants were having a great conversation with the researcher. The rationale behind
using this technique was that by watching themselves on video they would feel more confident and model
this behaviour with the people they meet. Results indicated that all three participants were able to learn from
their behaviours on video and improve conversational skills over time. At present, two of the three participants are
fully employed and the third is pursuing tertiary studies. Results from the study suggest that video self modeling may
be a positive, cost and time effective intervention to teach/improve conversational skills for these young survivors
so they find it easier to integrate into the NZ community.
Sehar Moughal is a 2015 graduate from The University of Auckland with a MSc in Psychology. She is currently a member of the
Shakti Youth Steering Group and involved in various projects focusing on intervention and prevention strategies for domestic violence .
Contact: sehar.moughal@gmail.com
Youth cases from Shakti Asian Womens Centre, Auckland, 2010-2015