Schools as an entry point to end violence against girls

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Ending violence against girls in and around schools is a deeply complex problem with solutions that span both human rights and development practice. Educational settings, generally perceived to be benign, safe, and transformational when it comes to violent attitudes and behaviors, are often sites of violence themselves. According to UN Global Guidance on School-Related Gender Based Violence, education has a key role to play in transforming the root causes of violence, and especially gender-based violence. Educational settings are critical sites for prevention, but they can also be critical sites for appropriately responding to instances of violence in a timely manner.

While the importance of doing school-based interventions is well understood, and several guidance notes and materials exist on this subject, less is known about the entry points for civil society and women’s rights organizations in this work. Drawing on the work of 51 organizations funded by the UN Trust Fund globally in 42 countries, this synthesis review documents evidence from project reports and final external evaluations to summarize:

  • the various types of activities and strategies that civil society organizations (CSOs) have employed to work in and around schools in EVAWG;
  • the results of these strategies; and
  • lessons learned.

The review found that CSOs funded by UN Trust Fund to End Violence against Women have effectively worked on a wide range prevention and response activities in and around schools, not only engaging girls and survivors directly, but also engaging their parents, the community, schoolteachers and administration, service providers and policy makers.

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