In March 2023, IJM Peru and our partner Paz y Esperanza (Peace and Hope) hosted the “More than Conquerors” retreat for child survivors of sexual violence in central Peru.
The retreat welcomed 10 survivors, nine girls and one boy, ranging in age from 10 to 18. The children participated in games and activities that fostered social integration and peer support.
A survivor leader of the Fenix Group – a survivor network supported by IJM Bolivia – spoke to the children, reassuring the participants that their pain can be transformed into strength and resilience.
Attendees also learned about strategies for community-based protection, what to do to avoid revictimization and where to go for extra support.
Getting to know other survivors in a safe space where they can share their stories is a crucial step in the restoration and aftercare process.
“When my mom decided to report the rape, my dad immediately objected and stopped supporting us soon after,” shared 15-year-old Yamila*.
"He left our home and that made me feel like a victim again: everyone called me a liar, making me feel more ashamed and guilty.”
Paz y Esperanza is a key IJM partner in Peru sharing our mission to strengthen the Peruvian justice system’s capacity to protect women and children, survivor empowerment and public advocacy.
“This retreat is the first one coordinated between Paz y Esperanza and IJM, and it represents a step forward toward the protection of Peruvian children and strong partnerships in Peru,” said Alfornso Wieland, IJM country director in Peru.