U.S. Ambassador Blome Inaugurates Women and Juveniles Facilitation Centre in Quetta

US-ambassador Blome

U.S. Ambassador Blome Inaugurates Women and Juveniles Facilitation Centre in Quetta (file foto)

By Arbaz Ahmed Janjhi
Quetta, Nov 23, 2023: In a significant stride towards bolstering support for survivors of gender-based violence (GBV), U.S. Ambassador to Pakistan, Donald A. Blome, officially opened the Women and Juvenile Facilitation Centre (WJFC) in Quetta on November 20, 2023.

The inauguration ceremony, held at the Chief Minister House in Quetta, was a high-profile event attended by key dignitaries.

Funded by the U.S. Embassy Office of International Narcotics and Law Enforcement (INL), the WJFC is a collaborative effort established with the technical support of the United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime (UNODC). The Balochistan Police and local authorities from the Government of Balochistan played a pivotal role in the realization of this critical initiative.

Present at the launch ceremony were Inspector General of Police, Balochistan, Abdul Khalique Sheikh (PSP), and Jeremy Milsom, the Country Representative for Pakistan, UNODC. The event drew the participation of senior officers and stakeholders from Balochistan’s rule of law sector.

The WJFC symbolizes the collective commitment of the Government of Balochistan to creating secure spaces for survivors of gender-based violence. Jeremy Milsom, Country Representative for Pakistan, UNODC, commended the initiative, stating, “This Women and Juvenile Facilitation Centre is modeled on global standards, providing protection and safeguard services to vulnerable groups, particularly women, children, and juveniles who are often victims of violence.”

In a guided tour for the U.S. Ambassador and the INL delegation, Pari Gul Tareen, the in-charge of WJFC and the first female Assistant Superintendent Police in Quetta, expressed hope for replication of the intervention across the province. Tareen stated, “WJFC is a great step forward in addressing GBV issues in Balochistan. I hope we are able to replicate this intervention across the province to ensure every survivor finds the support they deserve.”

The fully equipped WJFC offers inclusive and gender-based violence-sensitive services, including first aid, counseling, legal advice, psychosocial support, and referrals for access to shelter, legal aid, and protection. Additionally, the centre provides dedicated facilitation services to women, such as character certificates, police verification, learner driving licenses, and driving license renewals.

The Women and Juveniles Facilitation Centre is poised to play a crucial role in providing a safe haven for those affected by violence, fostering a culture of compassion and justice in Balochistan.