Grantees, 24th cycle (2021)

Launch of project activities in Narok, Kenya. Credit: CREAW, Kenya
Launch of project activities in Narok, Kenya. Credit: CREAW, Kenya

In response to the UN Trust Fund’s 2020 Call for Proposals, 37 new grants were awarded for a total of USD 15 million in 27 countries and territoriesThe Call for proposals, which received 1,498 applications, was open to civil society organizations working on the front lines of the COVID-19 response and recovery efforts to address and respond to violence against women and girls in the context of the pandemic. Most organizations receiving funding are women’s rights organizations (65%), with half of organizations receiving small grants (18). 

Organizations will implement projects that work to prevent violence, implement laws and policies and ensure women survivors of violence have access to safe and adequate multisectoral services, while responding to the ongoing repercussions of the COVID-19 pandemic and subsequent increases in violence. Projects will prioritize reaching the most marginalized women and girls and those experiencing intersecting forms of discrimination. 

AFRICA

Cameroon

Women in Action against Gender Based Violence Cameroon

Project Title: Improving access for Indigenous Mbororo women and girls to essential, safe and multi-sectoral services to end VAW/G within the context of the COVID-19 pandemic and the armed conflict in NW and SW Cameroon

Description: Women in Action against Gender Based Violence Cameroon intends to increase the number of Mbororo women and girls who can access multi-sectoral services during the COVID-19 pandemic. Women belonging to the indigenous pastoralist Mbororo people are especially at risk of violence because of the intersecting discrimination and exclusion they face, and patriarchal norms.

The project intends to reach about 12,000 Mbororo women and girls belonging to 13 councils of the North West Region with the highest concentrations of indigenous Mbororo pastoralists and 2 councils in the West Region with the highest number of Mbororo internally displaced persons (IDPs). The project will be co-implemented with the Mbororo Social and Cultural Development Association and the Association for the Welfare of Women and Indigenous People. The former will sensitize service providers on the situation of Mbororo pastoralist communities and provide paralegal workers to collect data and identify and refer Mbororo women and girl survivors of violence or those at risk. The latter will help mobilize Mbororo women and girls for project activities and provide community facilitators to collect data, engage with community sensitization and identification, and help with the referral of Mbororo women and girl survivors to services.

Project strategies include: (1) data collection on violence against women and girls in Mbororo communities; (2) raising awareness among key stakeholders on the situation of Mbororo women and girls; (3) improving access to information related to services for Mbororo communities; and (4) building the capacity of service providers to identify and reach Mbororo women and girls who have survived or are at risk of violence.

Kenya

Physicians for Human Rights – Kenya

Project Title: Enhancing Sexual Violence Response in Kenya During the COVID-19 Pandemic

Description: In Kenya, survivors of sexual violence often have to overcome hurdles to seek medical care and forensic evidence is collected, sexual violence cases that make it to court often fail because of insufficient evidence. The project of the Physicians for Human Rights ­– Kenya aims to ensure that many more women and girl survivors of sexual violence have access to medical care during the COVID-19 pandemic, including forensic documentation services, to ensure that evidence is available to drive investigations and prosecutions, creating pathways to justice for survivors. The project will reach more than 17,000 women and girls who have survived violence as well as government officials, healthcare workers, legal professionals and law enforcement agents.

The project intends to: (1) enhance the capacity of local health, legal and law enforcement professionals to collect, document and preserve forensic evidence of sexual violence and investigate these crimes, including by developing virtual platforms for cooperation across sectors to support prosecutions during the pandemic; and (2) catalyse systemic change in survivor-centred sexual violence response and prevention by promoting best practices through institutional capacity development, network mobilization and advocacy.

Nigeria

Tabitha Cumi Foundation

Project Title: Flashlight Actions On Girls Safety

Description:

The Tabitha Cumi Foundation, a faith-based organization, will address family violence – physical, sexual and psychological and emotional violence, as well as violence against girls – in the context of COVID-19. Its project will be implemented in 10 communities in three states in North Central NigeriaIt intends to: create safe spaces for adolescent girls to learn, speak out and share experiences; mobilize community support for behavioural change to prevent and respond to sexual and gender-based violence; and create an accessible, virtual case management hub for survivors of violence. The project aims to reach 550 adolescent girls aged 10-19, including 200 survivors of violence.

Project strategies include: (1) a gender needs assessment to understand the specific factors affecting violence against girls; (2) creating safe discussion spaces for adolescent girls for learning, psycho-social support, experience-sharing, and breaking the culture of silence; (3) clustering communities to create easy access to multi-sectoral services coordinated by a trained health worker or gender advocate; (4) establishing a one-stop virtual case management hub and facilitating access to information through a call centre for counselling and referrals; (5) training relevant stakeholders; and (6) community sensitization of faith and traditional leaders, as well as men and boys, about the consequences of violence against women and girls.

Nigeria

Sexual Offences Awareness & Response Initiative

Project Title: Strengthening Communities-in-emergencies to address sexual based violence against girls, within the COVID-19 pandemic context, in North Central Nigeria

Description: Women and children in Benue State living in camps for internally displaced persons (IDPs) are often subjected to high rates of sexual violence. During the COVID-19 lockdown, interventions to address violence against women stopped in the camps.

Sexual Offences Awareness & Response Initiative (SOAR) is a small, girl-focused organization. Its project plans to support more than 2,000 displaced girls who are living in four IDP camps and host communities in Benue State, as well as teachers, members and leaders of community groups, men and boys. The project aims to strengthen local child protection mechanisms in IDP camps and host communities; enhance in-school and out-of-school girls’ protection from sexual-based violence and their ability to respond to violence. . SOAR intends to base its work on a previously implemented project funded by the UN Trust Fund. By the end of the project it is envisaged that community-based mechanisms will be developed where they do not exist, and strengthened where they do exist, to address sexual-based violence against girls in IDP camps and host communities.

The project will: (1) empower girls to determine how sexual-based violence manifests itself during emergencies and decide what should be done; (2) empower out-of-school girls in IDP camps and informal settlements through training by community female volunteers; (3) strengthen Community Child Protection Committees to develop home-grown plans against sexual-based violence against girls; (4) provide improved technology for response mechanisms; and increase the capacities of local peer leaders, particularly men and boys, to raise awareness about negative socio-cultural norms and support survivors of sexual-based violence.

Nigeria

Women United for Economic Empowerment

Project Title: Improved action to end violence against women and girls in Akwa Ibom and Cross Rivers States, Nigeria

Description: The COVID-19 lockdown triggered a rise in gender-based violence and exposed challenges faced by institutions and organizations to meaningfully address and respond to the violence.

Women United for Economic Empowerment plans to support local communities to prevent and address gender-based violence sustainably, empowering rural Nigerian women to access services and justice institutions, and enjoy improved safety, health, well-being and economic opportunities. The project will be rolled out in eight communities in Akwa Ibom and Cross River States, aiming to reach 2,100 women and girls in general, 300 women and girls living with HIV/AIDS, and 300 women and girl survivors of violence. In addition, 2,500 members of community-based groups, faith-based organizations and the general public, as well as men, boys and uniformed personnel, will be engaged.

The project’s strategies include: (1) advocacy with key stakeholders to address cultural barriers affecting violence against women and girls; (2) establishing community action committees and training community-based gender champions to tackle violence against women and girls; (3) providing women and girls who have survived or are at risk of violence with access to toll-free helplines, online counselling and a social support network; and (4) establishing village “seed capital” programmes for economic empowerment to help survivors of violence.

South Africa

Lesedi la Batho

Project Title: Building Towards a GBV Free Community

Description: Mabopane, home to around 111,000 people, is a marginalized, industrialized township in Tshwane, Gauteng province, South Africa. COVID-19 lockdown measures have devastated its economy and exacerbated risk factors for violence against women and girls, including poverty, food insecurity, increased alcohol and drug abuse, and isolation of large families in small homes.

Lesedi la Batho is a small, women-led, faith-based organization in Mabopane that seeks to inspire, empower, engage and equip the youth and community at large through sport, education, skills training, arts and other activities. Its project aims to work with 1,800 women and girls – including survivors of violence and girls and boys in schools – to reduce gender-based violence in Mabopane and surrounding communities and improve services for survivors.

The project’s strategies include: (1) education and raising awareness about gender-based violence among school students, community leaders and community members at large; (2) improving the quality of and access to support services for survivors through counselling, referral and facilitating transport; (3) establishing women’s support groups; and (4) empowering women to become financially independent through training, job placement and an entrepreneurship hub.

LATIN AMERICA

Argentina

Enlaces territoriales para la equidad de genero

Project Title: Eliminando barreras de acceso para mujeres Sordas por una vida libre de violencias (Eliminating Access Barriers for Women with Hearing Impairment for a Life Free from Violence)

Description: The COVID-19 pandemic has aggravated problems facing deaf women wishing to report gender-based violence as an adequate tool for them to seek support is lacking. A telephone helpline was established during lockdown, complemented by a WhatsApp channel. However, deaf women need to use Argentine Sign Language (LSA), not Spanish, so neither form of communication is effective for them. Often, deaf women have had to ask for support from a family member to report violence, undermining confidentiality.

Enlaces territoriales para la equidad de genero aims to ensure that deaf women facing gender-based violence can access safe spaces and essential services adapted to their specific needs. Beneficiaries of the project will be 100 deaf women from Buenos Aires city (Avellaneda and Lomas de Zamora municipalities) and La Pampa Province. The project will also address intimate partner violence, sexual harassment and violence in public spaces/institutions, and institutional violence.

The project will: (1) empower and train deaf women leaders; (2) build capacity in the field of gender equality of key actors applying the deaf culture approach, such as LSA interpreters to ensure effective communication; (3) train private companies to improve accessibility and promotion of safe and inclusive spaces for deaf women; and (4) conduct a qualitative data survey to highlight what is needed to ensure deaf women who experience gender-based violence can exercise their rights.

Bolivia

Centro Yanapasiñani Bolivia para el desarrollo de la Mujer y la familia

Project Title: Recuperación de la justicia indígena para la prevención y atención de la violencia en razón de género, en el municipio de Coro Coro en tiempos de pandemia (Fostering of indigenous justice for the prevention and addressing of gender-based violence, in the municipality of Coro Coro during the pandemic)

Description: Coro Coro is a small rural indigenous Aymara community in Pacajes Province, La Paz Department in Bolivia.

Centro Yanapasiñani Bolivia para el desarrollo de la Mujer y la familia is a women’s rights, women-led small organization with considerable experience of indigenous communities. Its project aims to address violence against women and girls in Coro Coro, responding to gaps in support during the pandemic. It will prioritize economic, sexual, physical and psychological violence against women, including non-partner sexual violence, which are disproportionately higher in rural indigenous areas than in urban areas. It aims to reach 3,000 rural indigenous women. The organization will work in partnership with SEMTA (Multiple Services of Appropriate Technologies), the Bartolina women’s organization of Coro Coro and the Servicio Legal Integral Municipal - SLIM (Municipal Comprehensive Legal Services). 

The project aims to: (1) create the Municipal Network of Community Promoters for the Fight against Violence, comprising 39 trained women volunteers from 13 markas (local indigenous administrative units) of the municipality, which will guide and support women survivors of violence; and (2) create a written procedure to be agreed and applied by the indigenous authorities within the framework of existing regulations and their uses and customs. For these purposes, a self-diagnosis of violence against women and girls will be carried out.

Bolivia

Red de Salud de las Mujeres Latinoamericanasy del Caribe

Project Title: Paixhi Aibu Nipiakaxi: una estrategia de atención integral para mujeres víctimas de violencias en Bolivia (Feminist Response in Action Through Community Mobilization for Access to SGBV Services Engaging Intersecting Vulnerabilities)

Description: Measures to address and prevent COVID-19 in Bolivia began in March 2020, but few were introduced to respond to the increased violence against women and girls. However, several organizations in Bolivia have reported thousands of cases of gender-based violence during the pandemic and highlighted the lack of psycho-social, legal and other support for survivors, particularly indigenous Chiquitano women and young lesbian women.

Red de Salud de las Mujeres Latinoamericanas y del Caribe, a women’s rights organization, in partnership with the feminist organization Colectivo Rebeldía, aims to respond to the needs of rural, indigenous, young and lesbian women survivors of violence in the municipalities of San José, Pailón, Cuatro Cañadas, Concepción and the indigenous territory of Turubó-este in Santa Cruz department, all areas with high levels of poverty and unmet needs. The project intends to benefit 500 women by providing them with direct support services, implementing an Alternative Model of Care for survivors and advocating the needs of survivors of gender-based violence. It also intends to build the capacity of NGOs and State institutions to respond to violence against women, working and consulting with other local women’s organizations.

The project will be implemented through online training, face-to-face training in rural territories without connectivity, and digital communications strategies. Methods to reach marginalized and vulnerable women will include building alliances, providing support services and increasing capacity for claiming rights.

Colombia

Corporación Casa de la Mujer

Project Title: Barequeando entre la opresión y la resistencia: Mujeres de zonas mineras en Colombia lideran estrategias para exigir una vida libre de violencias (Balancing between oppression and resistance: Women from mining areas in Colombia lead strategies to demand a life free of violence)

Description: Antioquia department in northwest Colombia has extremely high rates of violence against women, including sexual and physical violence and deaths. The COVID-19 pandemic has increased such violence, partly because it exacerbated intimate partner violence. Corporación Casa de la Mujer is a local women’s NGO that has been at the forefront of defending women’s rights in Antioquia for almost 40 years. Through the project, which will be co-implemented with Jaime Arteaga & Asociados and Casa de la Mujer y Jaime Arteaga & Asociados, it intends to improve measures to prevent gender-based violence and increase access to justice for survivors of physical and sexual violence, and the families of victims of femicide. 

Strategies to achieve this include: (1) providing sustainable legal and psycho-social services for survivors; (2) litigation before national and international courts; (3) setting an agenda for the employment of women survivors; (4) strengthening the leadership skills and expertise of women activists and women’s organizations; (5) developing advocacy strategies; and (6) developing a cultural and historical memory strategy.

Colombia

Corporación Colectiva Justicia Mujer

Project Title: Consultorio Psico-Jurídico Feminista: respuesta social a las violencias contra las mujeres, la otra pandemia en el contexto COVID)

Description: Although Colombia’s jurisprudence has recognized structural violence against women, women survivors of violence often do not receive adequate legal or psychological support to meet their needs. Migrant women are at particular risk of sexual harassment, inhumane working conditions, sexual exploitation, trafficking and femicide. Access to justice has been beyond the reach of many women, including survivors of domestic violence, and during the COVID-19 pandemic the situation has become much worse. Meanwhile, services for preventing violence or for supporting survivors have been further reduced.

Corporación Colectiva Justicia Mujer (CCJM), a small women’s rights organization, is the first feminist legal organization in Antioquia department and has years of experience in offering legal support to survivors of violence and working to transform the justice-gender relationship. Its project intends to improve access to essential services, such as psychological and legal support, during the pandemic for women and girls who are survivors of violence. It also aims to help reduce institutional violence through education and training of strategic State actors, specifically in the municipalities of Bello, Itagüí and Medellín.

The project will implement an already tested local model – More Justice Fewer Barriers – that was developed by CCJM with the support of UN Women/USAID. The model, which has been the benchmark for psycho-legal care and training for the CCJM in Antioquia since 2019, relies on strategic litigation, psycho-legal care, political advocacy, knowledge management, public communication and virtual training.

El Salvador

Asociación para la Autodeterminación de Mujeres Salvadoreñas (ASmujeres)

Project Title: Mitigando la VBG en tiempos de Pandemia (Mitigating GBV during the COVID Pandemic)

Description: In El Salvador, gender-based violence increased during the COVID-19-related lockdown and often survivors were confined with their abusers, making it extremely difficult for them to seek help. Institutions that usually support survivors of violence were refocused during the pandemic. When institutions gradually re-opened after the lockdown ended, most prioritized those with a prior online appointment to avoid crowds. However, making such appointments was often not possible for those facing gender-based violence. Additionally, many survivors remained confined at home, often with their assailant.

The project to be run by the Asociación para la Autodeterminación de Mujeres Salvadoreñas (ASmujeres) intends to provide integrated support to women survivors of gender-based violence in six municipalities of Gran San Salvador, tackling intimate partner violence, sexual and psychological non-partner violence, and trafficking of women and girls. The Network of Women’s Rights Defenders, which was formed and trained by ASmujeres in 2015, will identify women that need support in each municipality, and the project will coordinate its work with other non-governmental organizations and public institutions.

Project strategies to be employed include: (1) strengthening the capacity of the Network of Women’s Rights Defenders, including by providing increased access to technology; (2) providing psychological support to women survivors or at-risk of violence; and (3) improving referrals of survivors to ASmujeres’ multidisciplinary team, which includes support for women with legal cases.

Guatemala

Women's Justice Initiative/Iniciativa de los Derechos de la Mujer

Project Title: Innovating and Scaling Proven Model to Improve Maya Women's Access to Justice and End Violence Against Women in Rural Guatemala

Description:

Women's Justice Initiative (WJI) has been providing legal services to survivors of violence in San Martín Jilotepeque and San José Poaquil since March 2020. Through this new project, it will combine service delivery with rights education and justice system capacity building to sustainably improve indigenous women’s access to justice. It will work with Maya Kaqchikel women in 24 indigenous rural communities in San Martín Jilotepeque and San José Poaquil municipalities.

The project will: (1) run courses on legal literacy and complementary radio programming, and train community advocates, to improve the knowledge of indigenous women and their communities about intimate partner violence and legal processes; (2) train female leaders to become community advocates; (3) provide legal services to women and girls who have survived violence; and (4) enhance the capacity of leaders, police and service providers to respond to violence against women and girls and sensitize these groups to the challenges facing indigenous women survivors of violence.

A three-month legal literacy course and complementary radio programming aims to provide indigenous women and their communities with the tools to know, use and shape the law while their families’ attitudes about violence against women and girls begin to shift. A two-year training course will teach community advocates how to lead rights workshops, connect women with WJI’s legal services and accompany women throughout the legal process.

Mexico

Equidad de Género, Ciudadanía, Trabajo y Familia, A.C.

Project Title: En comunidad, prevenimos y respondemos ante la violencia sexual y el embarazo infantil, en 12 municipios de México (Community Prevention and Response to Sexual Violence and Teenage Pregnancies in 12 municipalities in Mexico)

Description: Rates of sexual violence against women, girls and adolescents in Mexico, already high, have dramatically increased during the COVID-19 crisis due to the emergency health measures, including lockdowns, interruption of educational activities and closure of schools, and movement restrictions.

Equidad de Género, Ciudadanía, Trabajo y Familia, A.C. will focus on tackling the increase in sexual violence and teenage pregnancies during the pandemic. Through a comprehensive community-based approach, its project seeks to prevent and address sexual violence against girls and young women aged 10-19. Most of the project’s beneficiaries will be adolescent girls and young women from lower socio-economic classes, who are at a higher risk of sexual violence due to the COVID-19 lockdown. The project will cover four states – Estado de México, Puebla, Tlaxcala and Hidalgo – all of which have a high prevalence of violence against women and girls and human trafficking for sexual exploitation. The project’s overall goal is to strengthen prevention and protection measures against violence; and improve the safety and well-being of girls and young women at a high risk of sexual violence during the pandemic.

To this end, the project’s strategies include: (1) community mobilization and awareness raising; (2) capacity building; (3) consolidating the community network on prevention, protection, service provision and accompanying of survivors of violence; (4) advocacy for implementation of public policies on prevention of sexual violence against adolescent girls; and (5) changing at the community level the perspective, awareness and behaviour of everyone involved in the initiative, including by engaging with men and boys.

Suriname

Stichting Projekta

Project Title: Strengthening local community support mechanisms for indigenous women and girls in the hinterland of Suriname

Description: The indigenous women of Suriname have been especially affected by COVID-19-related restrictions on movement, as their income derived from transportation, tourism and related sectors has drastically fallen while violence within families has risen sharply. Rural Indigenous people live in isolated communities, leaving women at further risk of violence and without access to critical support services. .

Stichting Projekta, the supporting office of the Association of Indigenous Village Leaders in Suriname, intends to mobilize and train indigenous community members to respond to cases of violence against women and girls as well as intimate partner violence. The aim is to strengthen the capacity of the Lokono, Kalin’a, Akoerio, Trio and Wayana tribes living in clustered villages in the hinterlands of Suriname to reduce barriers to service provision. The project aims to reach 120 local community members and 20 local trainers.

Project activities will include: (1) building the capacity of community members to provide basic counselling and to refer Indigenous girls and women that are survivors or at risk of domestic violence; (2) running participatory training courses for local trainers, who will then train other community members; (3) developing and rolling out localized case registration systems to improve data collection in the service delivery area; and (4) working to improve community responses to the most vulnerable women and girls.

Uganda

THRIVE Gulu

Project Title: Access to MHPSS and Empowerment Support Services for Survivors of VAW/G in the Context of COVID-19: Post-Conflict Survivors and South Sudanese Refugee Populations in northern Uganda

Description: In 2020, northern Uganda experienced unprecedented levels of gender-based violence, because of the COVID-19 pandemic, exposing a major gap in mental health and psycho-social support services. Additionally, pandemic-related financial insecurity, school closures and food shortages intensified gender inequalities and increased the risks of violence against women and girls.

THRIVE Gulu, an international NGO, provides essential trauma recovery services to individuals and communities in post-conflict northern Uganda. Its project will address violence against women and girls in the context of COVID-19 in Odek sub-county in Omoro District and Palabek Refugee Settlement in Lamwo District. It will also seek to align multi-sectoral service providers to ensure that essential services are more easily accessible, and change social norms that adversely affect women and girls.

The project intends to: (1) train key service providers on best practices in referrals, standard operating procedures relating to COVID-19, and delivery of survivor-centred care; (2) train community lay counsellors/gender-based violence monitors as frontline responders to violence against women and girls; (3) establish “seed capital” for economic empowerment of women and girls; (4) mobilize zero tolerance village forums to tackle gender inequalities and promote women’s human rights; and (5) provide adolescent girls with life skills and tools to prevent gender-based violence.

ARAB STATES

Iraq

Baghdad Women Organization

Project Title: Strengthening the protective environment for women and girls at risk or impacted by GBV in the context of COVID-19 in Al-Anbar (Ramadi, Khalidiyah Jazerra Al-Khalidiyah) and Nineveh Plain (Qaraqosh, Bartela, Kremlesh)

Description: The situation of Iraqi women was already precarious before COVID-19 because of years of armed violence, socio-economic hardship and political instability. Movement restrictions and worsening socio-economic conditions during the pandemic have exacerbated the risks and incidence of violence against women and girls, particularly intimate partner violence, child marriage, and psychological and emotional violence. Safe spaces for women, already scarce, have been closed or offer limited services.

Baghdad Women Association is a women’s rights and women-led organization working to end all forms of violence against women and girls. Its project aims to improve the access of 3,600 internally displaced women and girls at risk of or impacted by gender-based violence to essential, safe and adequate multi-sectoral services in Al-Anbar and Nineveh Plain governorates. These services will include access to virtual and in-person psycho-social and legal services, and a livelihood programme. The Association will work in partnership with the Lutheran World Federation.

Three main strategies will be adopted: (1) strengthening the referral pathways for reporting and responding to protection incidents; (2) working with local state and non-state agencies to refer gender-based violence cases to competent service providers, and providing legal assistance, counselling and psycho-social peer group therapy in safe centres and through mobile teams; and (3) increasing the financial security of women whose livelihoods have been affected by COVID-19.

Iraq

The Lotus Flower

Project Title: Covid-19 Prevention of Violence Against Women and Girls

Description: In Kurdistan, northern Iraq, the COVID-19 pandemic has severely impacted female refugees and Internally Displaced Persons (IDP) communities, with substantial increases in gender-based violence towards women and girls – particularly intimate partner and family member violence and child marriage – because of movement restrictions, loss of income and rising tensions in households in the cramped camps. This has led to a rapid demand and need for extra psycho-social and psychological support for women.

The Lotus Flower, an international non-governmental organization that supports women and girls impacted by conflict and displacement, runs three women’s centres for IDPs and refugee communities in Kurdistan. Its project aims to tackle violence against women through psychological therapy and legal aid, livelihood support and raising awareness about gender-based violence in the community, particularly among men. The project will reach female Syrian refugees in Domiz 2 camp and displaced women and girls living outside the Duhok and Zakho camps.

Among other things, the project intends to: (1) scale-up remote and in-person psychological therapy and legal consultations for survivors of gender-based violence; (2) provide seed grants and business skills training to improve women’s economic prospects; and (3) implement a “positive masculinity” campaign using social and traditional media, including Rudaw TV and Dohuk Radio.

Jordan

Arab Women Organization of Jordan

Project Title: Feminist Response in Action Through Community Mobilization for Access to SGBV Services Engaging Intersecting Vulnerabilities

Description: Domestic violence has increased in Jordan during the COVID-19 pandemic, particularly for marginalized women. The Arab Women Organization of Jordan (AWO) aims to improve social protection and prevention mechanisms in response to increased physical and psychological violence against women and girls. Its project will be implemented in Irbid and Mafraq northern governorates, which border Syria and host Syrian refugees. Using a survivor-based approach, the project aims to reach 10,600 women, mainly women Syrian refugees but also vulnerable Jordanians from Mafraq and Irbid hosting communities and survivors of sexual gender-based violence and domestic violence. The beneficiaries will range from adolescents to elderly women, including rural women. The project will also work with men and boys.

The project will: (1) provide safe spaces and services in two AWO women safe centres, assisting beneficiaries with online and direct legal and psycho-social support, and offering case management as well as lifesaving skills training and counselling to help them cope with the crisis; (2) advocate with key State actors for effective implementation of national legislation addressing violence against women and girls; (3) provide legal counselling services to men and boys to ensure they understand and support women; and (4) run digital literacy courses for AWO staff in the field, the project’s beneficiaries and community members.

Jordan

Jordan Collateral Repair Project

Project Title: Women Empowerment & Gender Based Violence Prevention in Urban Amman

Description: During the COVID-19 pandemic, already high levels of gender-based violence and domestic abuse in Jordan have increased while access to essential services has decreased. Women and girl refugees living in the host community in the capital Amman are particularly vulnerable to gender-based violence in their homes, and face discrimination and harassment based on their gender, ethnicity and non-citizen status.

The Collateral Repair Project, an international non-governmental organization, works to prevent domestic violence and raise awareness of the consequences of violence against women and girls, including intimate partner violence, harmful practices, early/child and forced marriage, and so-called “honour” crimes. The project will primarily work with women and girls who are asylum seekers/refugees or internally displaced, female survivors of gender-based violence, and women and girls in general.

The project will: (1) expand the capacity of its current programmes to help women and girls, including by introducing a help desk at its community centres; (2) scale up tested approaches and introduce innovations to enable the organization to work more efficiently; and (3) increase provision of online services while maintaining in-person support where possible during the pandemic.

Jordan

Solidarity Is Global Institute – Jordan

Project Title: United for the Prevention of VAWG in Jordan during and in the Aftermath of COVID-19 Pandemic

Description: Women survivors of violence have faced serious challenges accessing essential services in Jordan during the COVID-19 pandemic.

Solidarity is Global Institute (SIGI) is a women’s rights and women-led organization that works to eliminate discrimination and violence against women and girls. Its project aims to better protect women and girls living in particular areas in Amman, Balqa’a, Ajloun, Ramtha and Madaba governorates who are at risk of increased intimate partner violence and harmful practices in the context of the pandemic. It aims to reach 1,000 women survivors of family violence – 150 Syrian refugees and 850 Jordanian women. SIGI will work with three co-implementing partners: Adaleh Center for Human Rights Studies, Phenix Center for Sustainable Development and Community Media Network.

The project aims to: (1) strengthen the capacity of women-led, community-based organizations; (2) strengthen the capacity of service providers; (3) increase survivors’ access to effective and comprehensive multi-sectoral services; (4) set up an economic empowerment programme; (5) empower communities and engage men and boys in efforts to change attitudes; (6) build the capacity of the media; and (7) launch a media and advocacy campaign based on accurate data collection.

State of Palestine

AISHA Association for Woman and Child Protection (AISHA)

Project Title: Prevention and Response to Violence Against Women and Girls in Gaza in the context of COVID-19 Crisis

Description: The UN Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs identified a surge in cases of domestic violence in the State of Palestine caused by movement restrictions and socio-economic hardship as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic.

The Association for Woman and Child Protection (AISHA) aims to ensure that the most vulnerable women and girls in the Gaza Strip who are subjected to violence, discrimination and harmful practices exacerbated by the COVID-19 pandemic enjoy improved safety and security, well-being, legal protection, quality of life, agency, resilience and empowerment. The project intends to reach 4,500 marginalized women and girls in four governorates (North-Gaza, Gaza, Deir-Balah and Khan-Younis) in the Gaza Strip. Activities will be carried out jointly by AISHA, the Women's Affairs Center and the Union of Health Working Committees.

The project will: (1) provide multi-sectoral prevention and response services to deal with violence against women and girls, including prevention of COVID-19 transmission; (2) build the capacity of health, social, legal and police institutions to identify and refer women and girl survivors of violence, and identify best practices relating to remote counselling and case management; and (3) run communication and community engagement activities to strengthen accountability and advocate for ending violence against women and girls in the context of the pandemic.

Tunisia

Centre of Arab Women for Training and Research

Project Title: Pour que l'invisible soit VISIBLE (To render the invisible visible)

Description: The Centre of Arab Women for Training and Research is a women’s rights and women-led regional civil society organization. Its project intends to work with 500 women with disabilities, particularly women with visual, hearing and/or speech impairments, and 200 survivors of violence against women and girls across Tunisia. The project aims to improve women’s access to available services, offer them more effective protection against violence, and increase their opportunities for social and professional integration.

Project strategies include: (1) using research on women with disabilities to inform public policies and provision of services; (2) offering training on disabilities for centres for survivors of gender-based violence and on gender for disabilities centres, associations and service providers; (3) making shelters for women survivors of violence more accessible for those with visual and/or hearing impairments; (4) advocacy with local and national government to improve the autonomy of people with hearing and visual impairments; (5) developing a mobile Safety App (“SafeNess”) adapted to the needs of women with visual, hearing and/or speech impairments; and (6) raising public awareness about disabilities and the vulnerabilities these might entail, including violence.

ASIA AND PACIFIC

India

Centre for Catalyzing Change

Project Title: Manjari: Moving towards a child marriage (CM) free society

Description: The project of the Centre for Catalyzing Change, an organization that works to empower women to realize gender equality, aims to reduce child marriage by protecting the rights of girls. The project will target areas that have a high gap in literacy rates between urban and rural residents and are home to large tribal populations. It intends to work with 4,500 rural girls aged 10-19 now living in the Basia and Palkot areas of Gumla, a city in Jharkhand state, where child marriage reportedly affects nearly one in four young women aged 15-19. In addition, awareness-raising training sessions will be run for 3,000 boys and men as well as teachers, school principals, government officials and frontline workers.

Strategies will include: (1) promoting access to education for girls; (2) equipping at-risk adolescent girls with knowledge and life skills to help them counter child marriage; (3) adopting a multi-sectoral approach; (4) linking adolescent girls with livelihood opportunities, (5) operationalizing child protection structures and building the capacity of key government departments to prevent child marriages and reduce school drop-out rates; and (6) influencing public opinion about child marriage.

India

Martha Farrell Foundation

Project Title: Making Institutions Accountable towards Women Domestic Workers: Effective Implementation of Sexual Harassment of Women at Workplace Act, 2013

Description:. India’s over 4 million domestic workers commonly experience harassment, humiliation, blackmail, maltreatment and non-payment of wages, situations exacerbated by COVID-19.

The Martha Farrell Foundation’s project intends to operate in 13 districts of the Delhi National Capital Region, aiming to improve the effectiveness of the Sexual Harassment of Women at Workplace Act 2013 to prevent violence against domestic workers. It aims to overcome the “culture of silence” around the issue of violence, promote collective learning, and empower women domestic workers to reduce their vulnerabilities, exercise their rights and demand justice for sexual harassment in the workplace.

The project will (1) establish 13 local committees that are required to be set up under the Sexual Harassment of Women at Workplace Act 2013; (2) develop capacity by training relevant public officers to effectively prevent sexual harassment of domestic workers and respond to their complaints; (3) strengthen coordination among civil society organizations, trade unions, police and district administrations to ensure accountability of institutions mandated to respond to violence against women; (4) improve prevention of violence against women workers; and (5) reinforce implementation of the Sexual Harassment of Women at Workplace Act 2013.

India

Organization for Community Development (OCD)

Project Title:Stop Violence Against Women of the Mukkuvar Indigenous Fisher Folk Community of India: From Zero Concern to Sustainable Care

Description: The Mukkuvar indigenous marine fisher community in India’s Tamil Nadu state saw an increase in violence against women after COVID-19 response measures. The geographical and cultural isolation of the community means that the issue of violence against women has been largely unaddressed. 

During its project, the Organization for Community Development, a small, women-led organization, will work with the most marginalized fisherwomen in selected villages in Tamil Nadu to address the sharp increase in gender-based violence. It aims to strengthen community-based women’s groups, focus on women who are particularly vulnerable to violence, and economically empower women to allow them to leave abusive relationships.

The project will: (1) raise awareness of the rights of women and the impact of the pandemic on gender-based violence, engaging respected community elders and community governance systems; (2) establish community structures that can respond to violence against women, including rehabilitation of survivors; (3) ensure that professional services for survivors of violence are available and accessible; (4) establish structures at village, cluster and district levels to address violence against women; and (5) foster awareness of women’s rights within the Mukkuvar community and engage traditional indigenous governance structures so they prevent violence against women and girls.

Mongolia

Save the Children Japan - Mongolia Office

Project Title: Protecting Girls from Violence and Exploitation in Mongolia

Description: Mongolia made improvements in ending violence against women and girls, but harmful practices have escalated during the COVID-19 crisis, reversing some of the gains. The pandemic has exacerbated existing gender inequalities and contributed to a drastic rise in gender-based violence, while also jeopardizing prevention efforts and service availability.

Save the Children Japan – Mongolia Office, through this project, seeks to protect adolescent girls by supporting existing services to incorporate COVID-19-aware responses; use survivor-centred, trauma-informed approaches to respond to and care for survivors; raise awareness among adolescent girls of available assistance; and empower girls through promoting peer support in the COVID-19 context. The goal is to better protect girls from increased risks of violence and exploitation due to the pandemic in five low socio-economic districts of Ulaanbaatar. The project aims to provide COVID-19-aware activities to 1,500 school children; give online access to girls aged 12-18 to information and resources on gender-based violence; and improve data collection on violence, exploitation and trafficking of girls.

The strategies to achieve this include: (1) developing an interdisciplinary COVID-19-aware training package on gender-based violence prevention, response and aftercare services; (2) training professionals, staff of women’s shelters, district hospital psychologists and psychiatrists, family medical clinicians, teachers and school administrators; (3) running peer-driven activities on gender-based violence prevention and protection at 15 district schools; and (4) disseminating “You Are Not Alone” messaging targeting adolescent girls.

Nepal

Center for Dalit Women Nepal

Project Title: Establish Mechanism and Strengthen Sub-National Policies to Combat Violence Against Dalit and Marginalized women and Girls

Description: Violence against women and girls in Nepal, already prevalent, increased rapidly during the lockdown instituted in response to the COVID-19 pandemic. In particular, there was a sharp rise in physical violence, child-marriage, dowry-related violence and violence in public spaces.

The project of the Center for Dalit Women Nepal, a local women’s rights organization, aims to help build communities free of all forms of gender-based violence against women from Dalit and marginalized communities.

Project strategies include: (1) mobilizing elected women representatives, women leaders, inclusive solidarity networks and other relevant structures towards evidence-based policy advocacy ; (2) digitalizing the online training programmes and mobilizing social media; (3) achieving structural changes through psycho-social counselling; (4) empowering local bodies, police personnel and others to advance gender equality; (5) mobilizing the media to educate people about women’s rights and gender-based violence; and (6) raising men’s awareness about violence against women and girls.

Pakistan

Shirkat Gah-Women's Resource Centre

Project Title: Hum-Qadam-Partners for Change

Description: Violence against women and girls, already endemic in Pakistan, has spiralled during the COVID-19 pandemic, with increased domestic violence and risks of child/early marriage at a time of disrupted prevention and response services. Lockdown measures have prevented women and girls from seeking help and reporting cases as they were trapped with abusers, and lacked privacy or telephones to make calls.

Shirkat Gah-Women's Resource Centre is a local women’s organization that assists women and marginalized communities across Pakistan. Its project aims to ensure that women and girl survivors and those at risk of domestic violence and child/early age marriage have enhanced access to robust community support, improved remote guidance tools and more COVID-19-appropriate protection systems in the regions of Khyber-Pakhtunkhwa, Sindh, Punjab and Balochistan.

The project aims to: (1) change the local ecosystems in selected communities; (2) enhance remote access to practical information and guidance in 16 districts; (3) help institutionalize necessary measures to improve responses to violence against women and girls; and (4) confront the challenges showcased by COVID-19 – the lack of information for women and girls; the paucity of resources to support them when confronting violence; weaknesses in social protection systems; and inadequate remote information and guidance systems on violence against women and girls.

Sri Lanka

Stand Up Movement Lanka

Project Title: Every Woman Counts

Description: In Sri Lanka, a country still suffering tensions, civil unrest and extensive militarization of certain areas in the post-conflict era, violence against women is pervasive. Implementation of a recent legal framework to stigmatize such violence has been slow. In this context, the risks of violence facing self-identified sex workers are particularly high, exacerbated by continuing social stigma and, since early 2020, the COVID-19 pandemic.

The project to be run by Stand Up Movement Lanka will focus on self-identified sex workers in the capital Colombo, Gampaha city in Western Province, Polonnaruwa, Galle, where the pandemic has made women even more vulnerable to violence, particularly at the hands of police, and denied them access to COVID-19 emergency relief. The project aims to create an environment of respect for the basic rights of self-identified sex workers.

Among the project’s strategies are: (1) strengthening self-identified sex workers’ networks and self-help practices; (2) developing a network of pro-bono lawyers to support self-identified sex workers; (3) conducting comprehensive research on the conditions of self-identified sex workers in the four target districts; and (4) nourishing empathy towards self-identified sex workers to help them access basic services without discrimination. 

EUROPE AND CENTRAL ASIA

Albania

Alliance Against LGBT Discrimination

Project Title: Advancing social inclusion of LBT women through increased access to community based and integrated social services and by promoting models of inclusive practices

Description: The COVID-19 outbreak and lockdown have made it extremely challenging for many lesbian, bisexual and transgender (LBT) women in Albania to fulfil their basic needs. Institutional barriers, lack of trust and discriminatory legislation mean that they cannot reach the limited social services available to the general public, so they rely on organizations providing essential services to LBT women. During the pandemic, many of these women have been forced to return to their families, often resulting in exposure to psychological and physical abuse. 

The project run by Alliance Against LGBT Discrimination (AALGBT) aims to ensure that LBT women have access to inclusive services through implementation of models of inclusive employment, housing and case management during and after the COVID-19 crisis.

Project strategies include(1) enabling access to safe spaces for LBT women through community-based centres and the provision of affirmative social care services; (2) promoting economic inclusion for LBT women through social enterprises and on-the-job training; (3) improving housing for LBT women; (4) promoting information-sharing on models of inclusive practices; and (5) delivering direct services to LBT women.

Albania

IAMANEH Switzerland

Programme Title: Building resilience and response to violence against women and girls under COVID-19 in Albania

The COVID-19 pandemic has substantially aggravated the risks of violence against women and girls at a time when referral mechanisms, public and private service providers and the health system have struggled to meet increased demand.

IAMANEH Switzerland, an international non-governmental organization, aims through its project to improve access for women and girls to essential, safe and adequate multi-sectoral services during the pandemic in 10 municipalities of Albania. It will focus on those most marginalized and at-risk of gender-based violence, including elderly women, women with disabilities, and women from Roma and Egyptian communities. The project aims to reach 400 women/girls from minority ethnic groups, 300 women/girls with disabilities, 3,500 women/girl survivors of violence and 700 women/girls living in rural and remote areas.

To achieve this, the project aims to: (1) empower women and girl survivors or at-risk of violence; (2) increase the effectiveness of the community network of services and emergency responses; (3) strengthen the multi-sectoral referral and response mechanisms, including by building the capacity key agencies dealing with violence against women and girls; (4) help to develop a new legal framework addressing digital and online violence against women; and (5) campaign to revise Section VI ("Sexual crimes") of the Albanian Criminal Code.

Armenia

Women’s Support Center

Project Title: Preventing and combating domestic violence in Armenia in the COVID-19 and post-war context

Description: The project of the Women’s Support Center (WSC) aims to support 1,080 women and girl survivors of domestic violence in seven regions, and internally displaced women and girls in three regions, in an effort to end the cycle of abuse in the COVID-19 and post-conflict context. WSC plans to work closely with trained social workers at 10 domestic violence crisis centres and the police to facilitate a strong network of domestic violence service providers. Additionally, it plans to use its vast network and contacts to engage regional police departments and centres that offer assistance to domestic violence survivors.

The project aims to: (1) provide comprehensive services to women survivors of domestic violence (including women living with disabilities, women and girl victims of sexual exploitation, and displaced women and girls); (2) establish an economic empowerment programme to help beneficiaries access vocational training, find employment, and/or start their own small businesses; (3) deliver an awareness raising workshop on domestic violence for displaced women; and (4) train police and social workers to improve the multi-sectoral response to domestic violence.

Georgia

Consultation Centre for Women "Sakhli"

Project Title: Promoting and Protecting Women and Girls during Covid-19 crisis

Description: In Georgia, the COVID-19 pandemic has resulted in loss of employment, closure of childcare facilities and restriction of movement, all of which have disproportionally affected women. This has exposed women to greater risks of domestic violence, while there are challenges in accessing law enforcement structures, protection systems and essential services. 

The project of Consultation Centre for Women "Sakhli" aims to reach women and girls in general as well as women and girlsurvivors of domestic and gender-based violence during the pandemic. It will be based in the capital Tbilisi, but will involve regional crisis centres in Zugdidi and Telavi (in west and east Georgia respectively) to support survivors and women at risk of violence. The project will be implemented in partnership with the local NGO Development and Engagement Platform and in close cooperation with the State Fund for Protection and Assistance of (Statutory) Victims of Human Trafficking (ATIP Fund).

The project will: (1) provide services to women and girls, including psycho-social rehabilitation, consultations, legal assistance and skills training; (2) raise awareness about domestic violence and violence against women and girls among adolescents and the general public; and (3) conduct advocacy directed at service providers and institutions for the introduction and application of supervisory standards.

Kosovo (under UN SCR 1244 (1999))

Kosova - Women 4 Women

Project Title: Together Building Resilience

Description: Women 4 Women aims to improve access to information, multi-sectoral response services and economic and networking opportunities for marginalized women and girls at increased risk of violence as a consequence of the COVID-19 pandemic. The project will work in six municipalities – Drenas, Lipjan, Shterpce, Skenderaj, Podujeve and Ferizaj ­– three of which have the highest incidence of violence against women and girls in Kosovo (under UN SCR 1244 (1999)), and three of which have a high incidence of violence against women and girls in rural areas. The projects aims to reach 570 women and girls, 120 women and girl survivors of violence and 50 “change agents”. It will also engage with civil society organizations, community-based groups and government officials.

To achieve its goals, the project intends to: (1) improve women’s awareness of how to identify and report violence against women and girls, and of available services and legal measures against such violence; 2) improve policies of the six local governments to mitigate the consequences of the pandemic; 3) amplify representation of the needs and voices of women from the six localities through women “change agents”; and 4) build the resilience of women who have survived or are at risk of violence through access to information, networking and socio-economic and psycho-social support.

Serbia

Udruženje Roma Novi Bečej

Project Title: Roma girls and women against pandemic of violence and exclusion from VAW protection mechanisms

Description: Udruženje Roma Novi Bečej (Novi Bečej Roma Association) is a feminist organization that works to empower Roma women and women from other minorities in Vojvodina Province to live free of violence. Its project aims to ensure that Roma and other disadvantaged women and girls – including survivors of domestic violence, women with disabilities and lesbian, bisexual, transgender, intersex and queer women ­– can access multi-sectoral services essential for their safety, protection and recovery from gender-based and sexual violence.

The project aims to: (1) inform and support Roma and disadvantaged women and girls to enable them to leave a situation of violence or avoid child/early marriage, including providing improved SOS Helpline services; (2) strengthen local institutional response mechanisms to violence against women and girls; (3) increase the accessibility of services for girls who are victims of child marriage; (4) raise awareness about the risks of child/early marriage; and (5) strengthen institutional competences to prevent and respond to sexual violence against girls.

Tajikistan

Public Organization Women's Center "Gulrukhsor"

Project Title: Helping families with disabilities lead lives with less violence against women

Description: In Tajikistan, women living with disabilities and caring for those with disabilities face severe discrimination and are at a high risk of domestic violence and economic hardship stemming from the COVID-19 pandemic,

The Public Organization Women's Center "Gulrukhsor" is aiming to help women with disabilities and women caring for those with disabilities gain a more positive self-identity and are empowered to live without violence. The project aims to benefit 150 women from the Uzbek ethnic minority population of northern Tajikistan, 150 women with disabilities and 345 women and girls caring for people with disabilities.

The project aims to: 1) improve the ability of health professionals and police to identify women suffering from or at risk of violence and know where they should refer them to; 2) improve attitudes of family members; (3) create further safe spaces to engage in dialogue and discussion, including through “family social norm changes” workshops and workshops involving women survivors or at risk of violence; and (4) strengthen the capacity of police and health workers.