Browse by Theme: Women's Voice

Simon Chol is a peace-building advisor for CARE South Sudan and former combatant in the fight for independence. Three years after independence for South Sudan, Simon asks what went wrong, and how the same mistakes can be avoided again.

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A researcher working for CARE International sent me an expert survey. The questions began, “What is your definition of women’s economic empowerment?” I thought long and hard. I finally answered: An economically empowered woman is one who can leave home if she has to.

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CARE’s discussion event at the Global Summit to End Sexual Violence in Conflict asked panellists to share their experience on what works in engaging men and boys – and what are their practical recommendations for scaling up this work and finding tangible global solutions to the problem of sexual and gender-based violence.

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As the world gathers at the Global Summit to End Sexual Violence in Conflict, a four-year CARE project addressing gender-based violence in East Africa has shown just what kind of real policy changes can be achieved using joined up advocacy and strong evidence.

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Violence against women and girls is one of the worst global epidemics. Studies show that gender-based violence (GBV) accounts for as much death and ill-health in women aged 15-44 years as cancer does. It is a greater cause of ill-health than malaria and traffic accidents combined. One in three women will be raped, beaten, coerced into sex or otherwise abused in her lifetime. The shocking truth is that violence against women and girls takes place in all countries, in homes, workplaces, schools and communities.

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The upcoming global summit (from June 10–13 in London) shines the spotlight back onto the subject of sexual violence in conflict. Newcomers to the subject might gasp and rightly point out: “This is horrifying, this is awful, something must be done!” – and so it must. But some humanitarian practitioners, speaking quietly from the back of the room, might say: “Excuse me, we have been working on this all along”.

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Empowering women is not without risks – we need to identify and overcome them...

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