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In response to COVID-19, staff at the Woman Forum Elbasan (WFE) in Albania immediately began to work from home and adapt their services for survivors of domestic violence, all too aware of the sharp increase in violence against women and girls worldwide occurring during the pandemic.
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Shelters for Abused Women and Girls and EMPOWER, two UNTF EVAW grantees in Albania and Malaysia are working to ensure the safety of LBT women and girl survivors of violence. Their stories are told today to commemorate International Day Against Homophobia, Transphobia and Biphobia on 17 May.
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“Thanks to this programme I am better equipped to deal with [the] LBT community needs and help women who are victims of violence .” Flavia Tiona*, psychology specialist in Shkodra Lesbian, bisexual and transgender (LBT) women in Albania experience high levels of violence in families, the public space, and state institutions. Data indicates that one in four women in Albania has experienced physical and/or sexual intimate partner violence in their lifetime.
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“Whenever my husband beats me, I run here,” said Bu Meh (alias), a Karenni mother of five from Myanmar. She was referring to a community-based multi-sectoral project that works to end violence against women and supports survivors in one of the many Karenni refugee camps dotted along the Thailand-Myanmar border.