Browse by Theme: Gender Based Violence

This year marks 15 years since world leaders passed UN Security Council Resolution 1325 on women, peace and security. On Tuesday 13 October, diplomats meet to review and chart ways forward on global efforts to protect and empower women in times of conflict. Given what we have learned from UNSCR 1325, what should we do differently from tomorrow on the Syrian conflict?

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On Thursday 1 October, John Kerry, US Secretary of State, Tobias Ellwood, UK Parliamentary Under Secretary of State for the Foreign and Commonwealth Office, and a number of other senior politicians from wealthy donor nations and developing countries, as well as leaders of UN humanitarian agencies and NGOs like CARE, meet at the United Nations to launch a new global ‘Roadmap’ to combat gender-based violence in humanitarian crises through to 2020. Here are four ideas for how the Roadmap can make a difference.

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Village savings and loan associations (VSLAs) have been a powerful tool for enabling millions of women to access loans, set up small businesses and improve their quality of life. But as an evaluation of a CARE VSLA programme in the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC) has shown, VSLAs can also be a platform for addressing the social norms that sustain gender inequality, and can therefore also contribute to the wider and more complex processes of women’s empowerment.

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20 years after the Beijing conference the incidence of Violence Against Women and Girls (VAWG) remains outrageously high with one in three women in the world condemned to experience physical or sexual violence in her lifetime. Nevertheless we should recognise and celebrate the progress that has been made, and highlight initiatives that are making a difference.

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Over the past 20 years much has been done to ensure that responses to sexual violence in emergencies are put in place. Years of advocacy, lobbying and implementation on a shoe-string have ensured that gender-based and sexual violence is at least being talked about in the right places and at the right level (such as last year’s Global Summit to End Sexual Violence in Conflict, led by William Hague and Angelina Jolie). But are we turning a blind eye to one of the biggest, and most silent, human rights violations of our time?

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One year on from the Global Summit in London on ending sexual violence in conflict, it is right to ask tough questions about its value and the benefit to survivors of violence in countries like the DRC. However, the Summit was never about finishing the job in one go, and numerous initiatives are taking forward the momentum generated last year.

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The APPG on Population, Development and Reproductive Health in collaboration with CARE International is holding a panel discussion in the House of Lords on 2 July on talking points and issues from a forthcoming CARE International paper on Child Marriage in Emergencies.

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