Gender-based Violence

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The abuse, rape, exploitation and trafficking of women and girls is exacerbated by conflict, flight and displacement, when family and community protections are weakened or destroyed.

Gender based violence is rooted in inequality. Programs that empower refugees women, build confidence and help them become self-sufficient changes the gender dynamic and reduces women’s vulnerability.  
Every humanitarian response to mitigate the heightened risks of sexual and gender based violence and ensure adequate response from the outset of emergencies. 

On the policy level, we have advocated for the passage of landmark Security Council resolutions on the protection of women and children. Our groundbreaking 2002 report If Not Now, When? documented the shortcomings of previous efforts to address GBV. This report and others by the Women's Refugee Commission influenced the development of such standard-setting guidance as the Inter-Agency Standing Committee's Guidelines for Gender-Based Violence Interventions in Humanitarian Settings and the Gender Handbook in Humanitarian Action. We also worked closely with the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees on the development of its Handbook for the Protection of Women and Girls.