To Empower Women, Don't Forget the Men

Impatient Optimists

This is the first in a series of blogs that profile winners of the Resolve Award, given by the Aspen Institute Global Leadership Council for Reproductive Health. The Resolve Award celebrates innovative efforts to expand access to family planning and reproductive health services.

It's a sweltering afternoon at the village school in Binkolo, in northern Sierra Leone. The "students"—a group of 50 men, ranging in age from their early 20s to their 60s—are listening attentively to the teacher.

"How many of you have ever beaten your wives?" he asks. About two-thirds of the men raise their hands.

"And how many of you would do it again?" The same hands come up.