Violence against women and girls (VAWG) is a significant social, economic and public health problem. No country is immune from this problem and it impacts all socio-economic groups, all ethnicities and all ages. This does not mean it is inevitable; it can be transformed through political will, through increased investment in programmes and policies, and through community support for normative change. The publication has been authored by the Members of Component Two for What Works: Economic and Social Costs of Violence Programme.
Violence persists in sex workers’ relationships with their intimate partners, an intervention and evaluation study, Samvedana Plus, was designed to understand and address violence and HIV risk in the intimate partnerships of female sex workers. Karnataka Health Promotion Trust (KHPT) is implementing Samvedana Plus, in partnership with Chaitanya AIDS Tadegattuwa Mahila Sangha, a communitybased organisation (CBO) of sex workers in northern Karnataka, India. The findings of the report are related to four broad categories: characteristics of the female sex workers and intimate partner relationships; gender attitudes, social norms and violence acceptance; experience of intimate partner violence, solidarity and self-worth; and STI/HIV risk perceptions, skills for self-protection and condom use among female sex workers.
There has been a growing interest in deriving the associated costs of violence against women. This has coincided with an explosion of costing studies in recent years, particularly after 2000, when interest in establishing these costs grew dramatically. Currently over 55 studies, mostly from high-income countries, have attempted to quantify the costs of various forms of violence against women. However, providing a comparison across countries can be difficult. This is mainly due to the different categories of costs, different forms of violence, and the different sampling approaches undertaken by individual studies (Varcoe et al., 2011). This comparison becomes even more difficult in developing country contexts where the availability of data is less robust and less systematic attention has been placed on measuring the economic costs of violence against women when compared to their industrialised counterparts. In this review of the evidence on the costs of violence against women, we provide an assessment of what we have learned and we establish the gaps which need to be addressed in future costing studies.
Authors: Ashe, S., Duvvury, N., Raghavendra, S., Scriver, S., and O’Donovan, D.
What Works to Prevent Violence Against Women and Girls is a £25 million global programme funded by the UK Department for International Development which seeks to understand and address the underlying causes of violence across Africa, Asia and the Middle East. The What Works programme is not alone in investing time and resources in researching and prioritising prevention and response to GBV. In 2013, Sweden and the UK Department for International Development jointly launched the Call to Action on Protection from GBV in Emergencies, a global appeal to diverse stakeholders – governments, donors, NGOs, civil society, women’s organisations, the private sector-to make specific commitments to contribute towards transforming the way GBV is addressed in the humanitarian space.
This brief sets out how the What Works to Prevent Violence Against Women and Girls in Conflict and Humanitarian Crises research portfolio complements and supports the achievements of the Call to Action’s objectives. The Call to Action identifies am “insufficient evidence base on effective programming and systemic response” as one of its areas of concern. As the largest multi-year study currently examining VAWG in conflict and crisis, What Works will play in instrumental role in advancing research in this area.
Women and girls are at increased risk of violence in conflict and humanitarian crises due to displacement, the breakdown of social structures, a lack of law enforcement, and a culture of impunity. This briefing paper provides a succinct overview of violence against women and girls (VAWG) in conflict and humanitarian emergencies. It reveals that little is known about the prevalence of VAWG in humanitarian emergencies. In addition, there is little robust evidence on what works to prevent and respond to VAWG in humanitarian emergencies. What evidence does exist suggests that the types of VAWG prevalent in humanitarian emergencies are not dissimilar to VAWG in non-emergency settings. As such, approaches that have been successful decreasing forms of VAWG such as intimate partner violence, and target underlying unequal gender norms and practices, may also be applicable in humanitarian settings.