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Violence against Women (VAW)


Close the Gap: How to eliminate violence against women beyond 2015

Oxfam Briefing Notes, March 2014

At least one in three women worldwide will experience some form of violence during their lifetime, often perpetrated by an intimate partner. Violence against women and girls is a fundamental human rights issue and a central challenge to development, democracy and peace. Oxfam is very concerned that efforts to eliminate violence against women do not match the scale of the problem. In fact, while the need to end violence against women is broadly recognized, levels of violence worldwide point towards a huge gap between rhetoric and action. The international community is failing women on this issue and will continue to fail if we do not step up our efforts. As governments, decision makers and civil society embark on a review of the Beijing Platform for Action and consider a framework to replace the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs), there is an opportunity to close the gap and renew our commitment to the elimination of violence against women.

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Securing Women’s Land and Property Rights. A Critical Step to Address HIV, Violence, and Food Security

Open Society Foundations, 2014

This briefing paper examines the importance of women’s land and property rights in the contexts of HIV and AIDS, violence against women, and food security. Land and property rights increase women’s autonomy—decreasing their dependence on men and entrapment in abusive relationships, enabling greater control over sexual relations, and improving their ability to produce food for themselves and their families. The report examines where and how these rights are protected under international human rights standards and offer strategies to help women effectively claim and enforce their rights.


“I’ve Never Experienced Happiness”: Child Marriage in Malawi

HRW, March 2014

The government of Malawi should increase efforts to end widespread child and forced marriage, or risk worsening poverty, illiteracy, and preventable maternal deaths in the country. According to government statistics, half of the girls in Malawi will be married by their 18th birthday, with some as young as age 9 or 10 being forced to marry. The report documents how child marriage prevents girls and women from participating in all spheres of life. The practice violates the rights to health, to education, to be free from physical, mental, and sexual violence, and to marry only when able and willing to give free and full consent. The report is based on in-depth interviews with 80 girls and women in six districts in southern and central Malawi. Interviews were also conducted with government officials, magistrates, child protection workers, police officers in charge of child protection, social welfare officers, traditional and religious leaders, health workers, teachers, legal and women’s rights experts, and representatives of NGOs, the UN and donor organizations. Human Rights Watch also observed six Victim Support Units at police stations.


Our Right to Safety: Women Human Rights Defenders’ Holistic Approach to Protection

AWID, March 2014

The examples included in this publication help illustrate the complex situations that women human rights defenders (WHRDs ) face when they are threatened with violence because of their work. It is this complexity that this new publication seeks to address. The variety of risks and violations that WHRDs face requires the adoption of differential support programs and gender-specific protection measures, taking into account the contexts in which women defenders live and work as well as other conditions and identities present in the diversity of WHRDs. AWID and the Women Human Rights Defenders International Coalition have developed this publication in an effort to assess the various mechanisms that have been developed to provide protection to WHRDs at risk, including initiatives developed by national governments, and regional and international human rights bodies.


Preventing and responding to gender-based violence in humanitarian crises

HPN Network Paper No. 77, February 2014

In recent years, international concern over gender-based violence (GBV) in emergencies has grown exponentially. Beginning in the mid-1990s with small programmes in a few countries, GBV interventions providing at least basic survivor care and support are now the norm rather than the exception in humanitarian programming. However, while international attention to GBV has increased substantially, there remains a lack of data on and understanding of good practice in relation to GBV programming in humanitarian contexts, and a lack of consensus on how to apply GBV concepts and terminology. This has resulted in a lack of agreement on how to define, prioritise, prevent and respond to gender-based violence in humanitarian contexts. In response to these challenges, this Network Paper maps and critically analyses good practice in preventing and responding to gender-based violence in humanitarian contexts to support humanitarian practitioners and policymakers to improve the quality of GBV programming.       

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Protecting the Girl Child. Using the law to end child, early and forced marriage and related human rights violations

Equality Now, January 2014

Studies show that girls and women who are educated and marry later are more likely to earn an income. Women invest that income into healthcare, food, education, childcare, and household durables – directly contributing to their country’s economy and development. Women who have their babies later in life are healthier, raise healthier, educated children and help end the perpetual cycles of inequality, discrimination, abuse and poverty. The reality, however, is that accepted social norms and, in many countries, discriminatory laws, provide a veneer of legitimacy to the harmful practices, such as child marriage, that shape a girl’s life and indeed the society in which she lives. These social norms are the fundamental drivers of discrimination and must be challenged everywhere.


Due Diligence Framework: State Accountability for Eliminating Violence against Women

Due Diligence Project, 2014

The Due Diligence Project is a research-advocacy project. Its main aim is to add content to the international legal principle of ‘due diligence’ in the context of State responsibility to end violence against women. The objective is to create and accountability framework based on the due diligence principle, namely the Due Diligence Framework, together with compliance guidelines that are concrete and measurable across regions. The Project sets out to do this by answering the following four questions:
(1) What is generally understood to be the content of the due diligence principle - by governments, civil society advocates, and international legal scholars and experts working on violence against women?
(2) How can compliance with this obligation be monitored, assessed and evaluated – by governments, civil society advocates and international legal scholars and experts working on violence against women?
(3) How are States complying with their due diligence obligation to prevent, protect against, prosecute, punish and provide redress for acts of violence against women?
(4) What are good practices to eliminate violence against women, globally and regionally?


Conflict and Violence

Gender & Development, Volume 21, Issue 3, November 2013

The articles in this issue focus on the complicated and context-specific relationship between gender inequality and violence and conflict, and debate ways to end gender-based violence in its many pernicious forms. Formally ending conflict is not enough to end gender-based violence. Long term, transformative change is necessary in order to advance women's rights in conflict and post-conflict contexts.   


Child, Early and Forced Marriage: A Multi-Country Study. A Submission to the UN Office of the High Commissioner on Human Rights (OCHCR)

WLUML, December 2013

In 2012, a two-part study on the state of forced marriage was undertaken on culturally-justified violence against women. The report of that study was subsequently revised as WLUML’s submission to the Office of the High Commissioner for Human Rights (OHCHR) for its report on preventing and eliminating child, early and forced marriage. Chapter 1 provides some background information on forced marriage, the gaps and shortcomings of existing literature, and a discussion on how this information is relevant to programmes aimed at eliminating this practice. Chapter 2 scopes existing literature on the existence of laws and/or practices in forced/early marriage in the contexts of six countries (Afghanistan, Iran, Nigeria, Pakistan, Senegal and Sudan). Specific contexts, challenges, and opportunities are identified in order to inform country-specific strategies for work on this matter.

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Country Profile: FGM in Ethiopia

28 Too Many, October 2013

The prime purpose of this report is to provide improved understanding of the issues relating to FGM in the wider framework of gender equality and social change in Ethiopia. By collating the research to date, this Country Profile can act as a benchmark to profile the current situation. As organisations send us their findings, reports, tools and models of change, we can update these reports and show where progress is being made. Whilst there are numerous challenges to overcome before FGM is eradicated in Ethiopia, many programmes are making positive active change and government legislation offers a useful base platform for deterring FGM practice.


Stop Violence Against Girls in School - Success Stories

ActionAid, September 2013

On countless occasions, girls are accused of or blamed for the violence they experience, and are often held responsible for the consequences of the violence of which they are victims, on the pretext that they should have done something to avoid it, or should have avoided doing whatever it was that provoked the violence. In this document, you will also find stories told by the girls themselves (from Ghana, Kenya and Mozambique) about how they have been able to challenge the deeply-rooted culture of violence in all sections of society, and how the community-level work helped to promote changes in legislation, policy, school regulations and harmful practices at home and in the wider community. The collection of strategies and windows into the lives of girls and their communities that make up this document are worth reading, as they will undoubtedly inspire you to help thousands of girls whose rights continue to be denied across the African continent and indeed, the wider world.


Conducting Safe, Effective and Ethical Interviews with Survivors of Sexual and Gender-based Violence. A Video for Change Guide

WITNESS, August 2013

This guide is part of WITNESS’ Video for Change how-to series on filming safely, effectively, and ethically. It’s based on the best practices established over 20 years of training and supporting human rights activists in 90 countries to use video. This guide is for human rights activists, advocates, citizen journalists, citizen filmmakers, professional journalists, and others who are filming and conducting interviews with survivors of gender-based violence for human rights documentation and advocacy.
It includes considerations and guidance for anyone setting out to interview survivors. The tips are organised into stages of preparation for the interview, during the interview, and after the interview, and special attention is given to ensuring the safety and security of interviewees. It is currently available in English with translations planned in Afrikaans, Arabic, Shona, Spanish, and Zulu. An earlier version is available in Swahili.

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Breaking the Silence on Violence against Indigenous Girls, Adolescents and Young Women. A call to action based on an overview of existing evidence from Africa, Asia Pacific and Latin America

UNICEF, May 2013

Using illustrations from Africa, Asia Pacific and Latin America, this study reaffirms the universality of violence across all socio-economic groups and cultures but finds that violence is heightened for indigenous girls, adolescents and young women when their communities’ broader contexts – such as colonial domination, continued discrimination, limited access to social services, dispossession from ancestral lands, militarization and intercommunal conflicts – intersect with personal circumstances such as age, sex, ethnicity and by patriarchal value systems of indigenous and wider societies. The study finds that the types of violence which have been documented with respect to indigenous girls and young women are embedded in a narrow space of evidence which, though widening through a number of qualitative and quantitative sources remains insufficient.


Responding to intimate partner violence and sexual violence against women. WHO clinical & policy guidelines

WHO, 2013

These guidelines aim to provide evidence-based guidance to health-care providers on the appropriate responses to intimate partner violence and sexual violence against women, including clinical interventions and emotional support. They also seek to raise awareness, among health-care providers and policymakers, of violence against women, to better understand the need for an appropriate health sector response to violence against women. The guidelines are based on systematic reviews of the evidence on identification and clinical care for intimate partner violence, clinical care for sexual assault, and training relating to intimate partner violence and sexual assault against women, as well as policy and programmatic approaches to delivering services and mandatory reporting of intimate partner violence. They provide standards that can act as the basis for national guidelines, and for integrating these issues into health-care provider education, as well as helping healthcare providers to be better informed about the care of women experiencing sexual assault and intimate partner violence.


Rising Up for Rights for Women and Girls - Abandoning female genital mutilation and cutting in the Fouta of Senegal

UNFPA, 2013

In Senegal, the movement to end female genital mutilation/cutting is reaching the most remote places. On the sandy roads of the Fouta region and along the river, the information about the problems caused by the traditional practice circulates, inspiring people in dozens of villages to rise up in support of women’s and girls’ health.


Female Genital Mutilation/Cutting: A statistical overview and exploration of the dynamics of change

UNICEF, 2013

While the majority of people in countries where female genital mutilation/cutting (FGM/C) is concentrated oppose this harmful practice, there are still 30 million girls at risk of being cut in the next decade. This report surveys 29 countries in Africa and the Middle East, where FGM/C persists, and finds that while support for the practice is in decline, girls remain in considerable danger. The challenge now is to let girls and women, boys and men speak out loudly and clearly and announce they want this harmful practice abandoned. The report points to a gap between people’s personal views on FGM/C and the entrenched sense of social obligation that fuels its continuation, exacerbated by a lack of open communication on this sensitive issue.


A girl's right to say no to marriage. Working to end child marriage and keep girls in school

Plan International, June 2013

One in three girls in the developing world is married by the age of 18. Child marriage is a violation of children’s human rights. Despite being prohibited by international human rights law and many national laws, child marriage continues to rob millions of girls of their childhood, forcing them out of education and into a life of poor prospects. This report calls on national governments and the international community to ensure national legislation prohibits child marriage, to ensure girls' access to quality education and to consistently raise child marriage as a human rights issue.


Women and the City 2 

ActionAid, February 2013

It is now well recognized that women and girls around the world face violence, sexual harassment and abuse in many of the spaces that they inhabit – their homes, workplaces, educational institutes, on streets and on public transport. Women’s fear of violence restricts their movement, limiting their use of public spaces, their movement from their homes and as a result, their full enjoyment of a range of human rights. Conducted in Brazil, Cambodia, Ethiopia, Kenya, Liberia and Nepal, this study comes at a time of significant global change. In 2008, the world reached a momentous milestone: for the first time in history, more than half of its human population – 3.3 billion people – lived in urban areas. By 2010, the global urban population outnumbered the rural population with 3.56 billion (51.5% of the global population) living in urban areas.

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The Role of Data in Addressing Violence against Women and Girls        

UNFPA, 2013

As the global spotlight has turned more sharply over the last decade on the persistence of violence against women and girls, the need for more and better data to inform evidence-based programming in order to address this human rights violation has escalated. As this brochure describes, advocates and defenders of women’s and girls’ safety and rights, as well as international agencies, national policymakers and donors, need to understand the nature and magnitude of the violence. They seek information and guidance on how statistically sound data can be collected on a subject that, though present and often pervasive in most societies and cultures, is sensitive and often hidden.

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Handbook for national action plans on violence against women

UN Women, 2012

The adoption and implementation of multi-sectoral national plans of action to address violence against women is one of the five key outcomes which the Secretary-General’s campaign “UNiTE to end violence against women” aims to achieve in all countries by 2015. In September 2010, UN Women, in cooperation with ECLAC/Subregional Headquarters for the Caribbean, organized an expert group meeting in Port-of-Spain, Trindad and Tobago, on good practices in national action plans on violence against women. The Handbook for national action plans on violence against women is a result of that meeting. The Handbook presents a model framework for national action plans on violence against women, which sets out detailed recommendations, accompanied by explanatory commentaries and good practice examples.


Justice in DRC: Mobile Courts Combat Rape and Impunity in Eastern Congo

Open Society Justice Initiative, June 2012

The eastern areas of the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC) have been called the worst areas in the world to be a woman or child. For the past 15 years, women and girls in the region have suffered mass sexual violence on an unimaginable scale, perpetrated by the Congolese army, rebels, militias, and others. Impunity has been the rule, and simply finding courtrooms and judges is next to impossible beyond the provincial capitals. In response, the Open Society Justice Initiative and the Open Society Initiative for Southern Africa (OSISA) have supported the creation of mobile gender courts able to properly try rape cases. The courts have brought a measure of justice—and dignity—to victims and demonstrate that, with modest support, local institutions can respond even under the most challenging circumstances.


Managing Gender-based Violence Programmes in Emergencies

UNFPA, 2012

This is a companion guide to UNFPA’s free e-learning course for professionals who are working to address gender based violence in humanitarian contexts. The e-learning course uses problems that practitioners currently face and case scenarios from real-life humanitarian contexts to guide learning. Integrated throughout the modules are videos, learning activities and quizzes that both engage the learner, and support participants’ varying learning styles. The guide not only covers all of the content in the e-learning, but also provides new case studies, sample tools, best practices, and activities.

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Guidance note - Gender-based violence and livelihood interventions : Focus on populations of humanitarian concern in the context of HIV and AIDS

FAO, 2010 (with input from Dimitra)

This Guidance Note provides an overview of the complex interactions between GBV, HIV and AIDS and rural livelihoods, based on the available literature and findings from FAO field studies in Kenya and Uganda. The studies, conducted in humanitarian settings, focused mainly on the relationships between these issues, and on identifying the appropriate livelihood strategies to mitigate and prevent GBV, and strengthen people’s resilience.

It also gives information on how to make livelihood interventions in the agricultural sector relevant to the realities of GBV and commercial sex, and thus enhance the effectiveness of the programmatic response to both food and livelihoods insecurity and GBV, in the context of humanitarian crises and HIV.

Download the document (34 pages,  2.2 MB)

Her Stories

ActionAid, April 2010

Eliminating violence against women is inseparable from achieving equality for women. One in three women will be raped, beaten, coerced into sex or abused in her lifetime - and in conflicts, the situation is exacerbated. In this report, African women tell remarkable accounts of how they have overcome violence and discrimination in appalling circumstances. The women, from Burundi, Sierra Leone and the Democratic Republic of Congo, have all taken part in ActionAid’s project, aimed at reducing violence against women and have been provided with legal, psychosocial support, livelihoods training and lobbying advice.

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Reporting Gender-based Violence. A Handbook for Journalists

IPS Africa, December 2009

IPS Africa has launched a new handbook for reporters to support sustained media coverage of gender-based violence beyond 16 Days of No Violence against Women and Children. The toolkit is published as part of IPS’ Communicating for Change: Getting Voice, Visibility and Impact for Gender Equality programme funded by the Dutch government’s MDG3 Fund. It looks at various issues related to gender-based violence including religious and harmful traditional practices, domestic violence, sexual violence, femicide, sex work and trafficking, sexual harassment, armed conflicts, HIV and AIDS, child abuse, the role of men, the criminal justice system, as well as the costs of gender-based violence. Reporters are guided by real stories illustrating how these issues and trends are treated editorially, tip boxes, discussion points, fact checks and additional resources.


Together we must… End violence against women and girls and HIV & AIDS

A review of promising practices in addressing the intersection

UNIFEM & ActionAid, November 2009

Together We Must! represents an initial effort to draw attention to the knowledge, institutional capacity and resources needed to comprehensively address the intersection between HIV & AIDS and VAWG. The aim is to stimulate debate and collaboration among practitioners and advocates around how to identify and promote effective prevention policies and practices that can be adapted to various contexts. Violence against women and girls (VAWG) and HIV & AIDS are mutually reinforcing pandemics; the need and the opportunity for integrated approaches addressing their intersection are increasingly evident. To date, however, such strategies have not been implemented on a widespread scale. Advocates and communities working on HIV & AIDS and VAWG are just beginning to come together to explore common strategies.


Peril or Protection: The Link between Livelihoods and Gender-based Violence in Displacement Settings

Women’s Refugee Commission, 2009

When women are displaced due to conflict or human rights abuses, they adopt new strategies to provide for themselves and their families. These new strategies often place them at risk for gender-based violence (GBV), including sexual exploitation and abuse, rape and domestic violence. Without safe economic opportunities, displaced women employ strategies such as prostitution, trading sex for food and leaving the relative safety of refugee camps to collect firewood to cook with or to sell. The Women’s Refugee Commission undertook research to determine whether programs set up to provide women with safe, alternative livelihoods do in fact reduce their risk of exposure to violence. This report combines findings from three field missions to refugee settings; a pilot project in Burundi providing refugees with increased access to economic resources through village savings and loan associations; and desk research and interviews targeting promising examples of economic empowerment interventions that increase women’s safety.


Refugee Girls: The Invisible Faces of War

Women’s Refugee Commission, 2009

Girls are rarely featured in the coverage of armed conflict. Given their invisibility, one might assume that girls are somehow spared involvement in war. Yet, not only are girls commonly targeted in armed conflict, in many ways their lives are more profoundly affected by it than other groups. However, their special needs are frequently overlooked or ignored. More than 140 million girls live in fragile states affected by armed conflict. Of the 42 million people who have had to flee their homes because of war, 80 percent are women, children and young people. At least 10 million are estimated to be girls and young women.

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Soldiers Who Rape, Commanders Who Condone: Sexual Violence and Military Reform in the Democratic Republic of Congo

HRW, July 2009

This report documents persistent sexual violence by the army, and the limited impact of government and donor efforts to address the problem. It looks closely at the conduct of the army's 14th brigade as an example of the wider problem of sexual violence by soldiers. The brigade has been implicated in many acts of sexual violence in North and South Kivu provinces, often in the context of massive looting and other attacks on civilians. Despite ample information about the situation, military, political, and judicial authorities have failed to take decisive action to prevent rape.

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Global Consultation on Female Genital Mutilation/Cutting

UNFPA, 2009

This publication contains rich research findings concerning global trends and the prevalence of female genital mutilation/cutting and its linkages with maternal and newborn health. It describes changing patterns and practices, including medicalization, and analyzes the threat FGM/C poses to the achievement of Millennium Development Goals as well as its economic and health costs. It identifies important lessons and discusses in detail case studies as well as the application of theories as a basis for accelerating the abandonment process. It also addresses the needs for closing gaps in law enforcement, building capacity, mobilizing resources and building global partnerships. This extensive knowledge - which was shared by research institutions, foundations, lawyers, medical professionals, religious scholars, development partners and NGOs - would be difficult to find elsewhere.

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Addressing Gender-based Violence - UNFPA Strategy and Framework for Action

UNFPA, 2009

This publication identifies priority areas for intensified action on gender-based violence: policy frameworks, data collection and analysis, focus on sexual and reproductive health, humanitarian responses, adolescents and youth, men and boys, faith-based networks, and vulnerable and marginalized populations. It is intended to provide a common platform and technical guidance for UNFPA at country, regional and global levels and effectively guide capacity-development initiatives, resources and partnerships. The strategy also outlines UNFPA's comparative advantages, experience and leadership potential within the context of United Nations reform, and suggests opportunities for improving the efficacy of its programme implementation and technical support. 

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Programming to Address Violence Against Women – 8 case studies, volume 2

UNFPA, 2008

This is the second volume in a series that documents best practices in preventing and responding to violence against women. These eight case studies feature initiatives from Algeria, Guatemala, Honduras, India, Indonesia, Nepal, Sri Lanka and Zimbabwe, implemented by governments and other partners with support from UNFPA. They can inform efforts on ending violence against women, which is both a human rights violation and a public health concern.


Democratic Republic of Congo: North Kivu: No end to war on women and children

Amnesty International, September 2008

Months after a peace agreement to end conflict in North Kivu province, civilians are still being killed, raped, abducted and tortured by armed group and government forces. Amnesty International has found evidence that armed groups have continued to commit crimes, including unlawful killings, rape, torture, and the recruitment of child soldiers. Government security forces have also unlawfully detained and ill-treated children, and continue to sexually abuse women and girls. Amnesty International is urging the DRC government and armed groups to renew their commitment to upholding international human rights and humanitarian law.

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Justice for Women: Seeking Accountability for Sexual Crimes in Post-Conflict Situations

FRIDE, July 2008

The systematic use of extreme violence, in particular sexual violence, in conflict and post-conflict situations raises the pressing question of how to end the cycle of impunity. Although the priority is for national justice systems to bring the perpetrators of massive human rights abuses in their territories to account, it has been amply demonstrated that this is not always a practical answer.

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Exchange on HIV/AIDS, Sexuality and Gender - Issue 3-2008: Gender Violence, HIV and AIDS

KIT, 2008

This issue of Exchange on HIV/AIDS, Sexuality and Gender addresses the link between HIV and AIDS and violence against women. Violence, which is experienced by many women in their lives, increases their vulnerability to HIV in many ways. Rape can contribute to HIV transmission due to tears and lacerations resulting from the use of force whereas violence can prevent women from negotiating safer sex and accessing treatment. On the other hand, fear of violence prevents women from learning and/or disclosing their status especially if they are HIV-positive.

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From Invisible to Indivisible: Promoting and Protecting the Right of the Girl Child to Be Free from Violence

UNICEF, April 2008

The UN Study on Violence against Children explores a range of factors that make children more vulnerable to violence and suggests strategies for ending violence against children. As part of this analysis the study recognises that virtually all forms of violence are linked to entrenched gender roles and inequalities, and that the violation of the rights of children is closely linked to the status of women. Violence against children has incalculable costs to present and future generations, and it undermines human development.

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Exchange on HIV/AIDS, Sexuality and Gender - Issue 1-2008: Harmful traditional practices

KIT, 2008

This issue pays particular attention to the links between harmful traditional practices and HIV. It contains articles on female genital mutilation, early marriage in Ethiopia and widow inheritance in Uganda. Other articles: Defending the sexual and reproductive health rights of women affected by HIV in Argentina; Addressing the sexual and reproductive health needs of young people in the informal sector in Mali; Between tradition and modernity: Controversy in India about the sex education programme in state-run schools.

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Hidden in the Mealie Meal: Gender-Based Abuses and Women's HIV Treatment in Zambia

Human Rights Watch, December 2007

Zambia is one of many countries setting ambitious targets for rapidly scaling up antiretroviral treatment for HIV/AIDS and is making impressive progress. It is addressing a range of obstacles to treatment and receiving substantial donor support to overcome them. However, women’s unequal status in Zambian society gravely undermines their ability to access and adhere to antiretroviral treatment (ART), and the government is paying little if any attention to the gender dimension of treatment, especially the impact of entrenched discrimination and gender-based violence and abuse.

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Doubly Traumatised: The lack of access to justice by women victims of sexual and gender-based violence in northern Uganda

Amnesty International, November 2007

The Uganda government is failing in its international and domestic legal obligations relating to the protection of women and girls, and their right to access justice in northern Uganda. Amnesty International is strongly concerned that despite the cessation of hostilities in the conflict in northern Uganda, the incidence of violence against women and girls remains high. The organisation is further concerned that because of many insurmountable challenges and practices in the legal system, there is a culture of entrenched impunity for violence against women.

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Gender-Based Violence

Oxfam UK, September 2007

This book brings together some of the most interesting and innovative work being done to tackle gender-based violence in various sectors, world regions, and socio-political contexts. Articles cover a wide range of manifestations of gender-based violence, including femicide, or the murder of women because they are women, domestic and sexual violence, female genital mutilation or cutting, the sexual exploitation of girls at school, and trafficking for prostitution. The case studies are drawn from South and East Asia, sub-Saharan Africa, and Central America, and a detailed list of resources completes the volume. This collection of articles will be useful to development and humanitarian practitioners, policy makers, and academics, including both gender specialists and non-gender specialists alike.

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Côte d'Ivoire: Women and girls forgotten victims of conflict

AI, March 2007

In this report, Amnesty International (AI) reveals the horrifying extent of sexual violence against women and girls taking place in the context of the current conflict in Cote d'Ivoire, saying that the scale and brutal nature of the attacks are vastly underestimated. AI said that many women and girls are the victims of gang rape or are abducted and forced into sexual slavery by fighters. Rape is often accompanied by beatings and torture – often committed in public and in front of family members. Some women have even been raped next to the corpses of family members. 

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The Shame of War: Sexual Violence Against Women and Girls in Conflict

OCHA/IRIN, March 2007

This 137-page reference book and photo essay of portraits and testimonies of the sexual violence women suffer when men go to war has been launched by IRIN. It examines the scope and nature of this violence and looks at the different ways the international community is addressing sexual violence against women and girls during and after conflict. This is IRIN's second publication on gender-based violence.

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Let's End Violence against Women (Video)

Leo Burnett, UNIFEM, 2007

With a striking series of images, this public service announcement reveals that violence against women is one of the most common forms of violence in the world.

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Ending Violence Against Women. Programming for Prevention, Protection and Care

UNFPA, 2007

This handbook, intended primarily for development practitioners, provides practical points to consider when designing and implementing projects addressing violence against women. It is a collection of good practices drawn from ten case studies described in a complementary volume "Programming to Address Violence Against Women". The approaches are based on an appreciation of culture and the role it plays in this issue.

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Sexual violence: weapon of war, impediment to peace

Forced Migration Review (FMR) 27, Refugee Studies Centre & UNFPA, January 2007

FMR 27 explores the challenges and opportunities for combating sexual violence in conflict, post-conflict and development recovery contexts. Produced in partnership with UNFPA, it builds on momentum generated by the June 2006 International Symposium on Sexual Violence in Conflict and Beyond jointly convened by UNFPA, the EC and the Government of Belgium. Practice-oriented submissions from 40 specialists from a wide range of humanitarian agencies highlight key issues and challenges, best practices, innovative programmes and recommendations.

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What happened to the women? Gender and reparations for human rights violations

SSRC, December 2006

This online book chronicles human rights violations against women in the context of violent conflict, with a focus on what these crimes mean to the women themselves and what happens in their aftermath. A key subject covered in the book is that of reparations to women who have suffered, and a consideration of how these procedures can take into account the particular nature of violations suffered by women, while contributing to increasing women's status as equal citizens.

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Abandoning Female Genital Mutilation/Cutting: An In-Depth Look at Promising Practices

PRB, December 2006

This publication presents an in-depth look at three promising interventions identified through collaboration by five organizations: the Population Reference Bureau (PBR), Family Health International, PATH, Population Council, and The Manoff Group. Its objective is to meet the primary information need identified by hundreds of organisations and individuals working toward the abandonment of FGM/C: information on case studies that illustrate what is working and why.


In-depth study on all forms of violence against women. Report of the UN Secretary-General

UNDAW, October 2006

In-depth study on all forms of violence against women, providing: statistical overview on all forms of VAW; causes of VAW; medium and long-term consequences of VAW; health, social and economic costs of VAW; best practice examples for combating and eliminating VAW. The study also proposes action-oriented recommendations, including on effective remedies and prevention and rehabilitation measures.

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Zero tolerance: stop the violence against women and children, stop HIV/AIDS

Global AIDS Alliance, August 2006

This document describes a framework for a comprehensive response to violence against women and children, including the resources that would be needed, political and financial, for full implementation. It discusses the various arenas and circumstances in which women and children are vulnerable to violence and to infection with HIV, using direct quotes and case studies of women and children's experiences. It then discusses effective strategies and programmes that are needed to address violence in each situation, illustrating with case studies.


Good Practices in Combating and Eliminating Violence Against Women

UNDAW, May 2005

This report gives a global picture of VAW, highlights best practice and lays out recommendations in the areas of law, prevention and provision of services.


Abandoning Female Genital Mutilation/Cutting: Information From Around the World

Population Reference Bureau and Partners, 2005

This CD-ROM, in English and French, is a collection of data and research on female genital mutilation/cutting (FGM/C) from a wide variety of sources. This resource is a direct response to the findings of a 2004 survey in which respondents said that serious information gaps on FGM/C exist. The CD-ROM fills some of these information gaps, particularly where the Internet is an expensive and unreliable method of research, by including material on various approaches used by organizations working toward abandonment of FGM/C, as well as on statistics, training efforts, and policy aspects. This resource is being disseminated to various NGOs and individuals worldwide.

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Researching Violence Against Women – A Practical Guide for Researchers and Activists

WHO / PATH, 2005

This manual draws on the collective experiences and insights of many individuals, and in particular from the implementation of the WHO Multi-country Study on Women’s Health and Domestic Violence against Women in over 10 countries. The manual has been developed in response to the growing need to improve the quality, quantity, and comparability of international data on physical and sexual abuse. It outlines some of the methodological and ethical challenges of conducting research on VAW and describes a range of innovative techniques.

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Democratic Republic of Congo: North Kivu: No end to war on women and children

Amnesty International, Sept 2008

Months after a peace agreement to end conflict in North Kivu province, civilians are still being killed, raped, abducted and tortured by armed group and government forces. Amnesty International has found evidence that armed groups have continued to commit crimes, including unlawful killings, rape, torture, and the recruitment of child soldiers. Government security forces have also unlawfully detained and ill-treated children, and continue to sexually abuse women and girls. Amnesty International is urging the DRC government and armed groups to renew their commitment to upholding international human rights and humanitarian law.

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