In July 2010, the United Nations General Assembly created UN Women, the United Nations Entity for Gender Equality and the Empowerment of Women.
The creation of UN Women came about as part of the UN reform agenda, bringing together resources and mandates for greater impact. It merges and builds on the important work of four previously distinct parts of the UN system, which focused exclusively on gender equality and women’s empowerment:
*Division for the Advancement of Women (DAW)
*International Research and Training Institute for the Advancement of Women (INSTRAW)
*Office of the Special Adviser on Gender Issues and Advancement of Women (OSAGI)
*United Nations Development Fund for Women (UNIFEM)
The main roles of UN Women are:
*To support inter-governmental bodies, such as the Commission on the Status of Women, in their formulation of policies, global standards and norms.
*To help Member States to implement these standards, standing ready to provide suitable technical and financial support to those countries that request it, and to forge effective partnerships with civil society.
*To hold the UN system accountable for its own commitments on gender equality, including regular monitoring of system-wide progress.
Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of Discrimination against Women (CEDAW); Beijing Declaration and Platform for Action; UN Security Council Resolution 1325 on Women, Peace and Security (2000) and four subsequently adopted resolutions on women, peace and security: 1820 (2008), 1888 (2009), 1889 (2009), and 1960 (2010); Millenium Declaration and Millenium Development Goals (MDGs).
UN Women is the UN organization dedicated to gender equality and the empowerment of women. A global champion for women and girls, UN Women was established to accelerate progress on meeting their needs worldwide.
UN Women supports UN Member States as they set global standards for achieving gender equality, and works with governments and civil society to design laws, policies, programmes and services needed to implement these standards. It stands behind women’s equal participation in all aspects of life, focusing on five priority areas: increasing women’s leadership and participation; ending violence against women; engaging women in all aspects of peace and security processes; enhancing women’s economic empowerment; and making gender equality central to national development planning and budgeting. UN Women also coordinates and promotes the UN system’s work in advancing gender equality.
Female Genital Mutilation/Cutting and Violence against Women and Girls: Strengthening the Policy Linkages between Different Forms of Violence (2017)
UN Women Annual Report (2015-2016)
A Framework to Underpin Action to Prevent Violence against Women (2015)https://www2.unwomen.org/~/media/headquarters/attachments/sections/library/publications/2015/prevention_framework_unwomen_nov2015.pdf?v=1&d=20151124T225223
Essential Services Package for Women and Girls Subject to Violence (2015)https://www.unwomen.org/en/digital-library/publications/2015/12/essential-services-package-for-women-and-girls-subject-to-violence
Handbook for National Action Plans on Violence Against Women (2011)
Supplement to the Handbook for Legislation on Violence Against Women: “Harmful Practices” Against Women (2011)
Strengthening of the capacities of several sectoral ministry officials (gender, health, justice, interior, defense) and NGOs in several areas, especially results-based management, protocols for dealing with sexual View More
Strengthening of the capacities of several sectoral ministry officials (gender, health, justice, interior, defense) and NGOs in several areas, especially results-based management, protocols for dealing with sexual violence, forensic expertise, etc.
In Senegal, sector ministry staff benefited from capacity building on GBV. Women leaders, young people through cultural and sports associations and local communities through committees to combat violence.
The continuous support provided in training capacities resulted in an increased capacity of key players, namely the police, the justice sector and the civil society organizations in implementing specific activities and actions in alignment with the recommendations of the conducted evaluation of the law implementation, namely spread awareness activities, assessment of the Rehabilitation Program of Men Offenders of GBV and the integration of GBV data and information in the information system of the operational management of the Ministry of Internal Administration.
UN Women trained 17 young Slam artists, who in turn reinforced the knowledge of 180 young students, girls and boys, who wrote and proclaimed poetic texts on GBV prevention and prevention during a slam contest in Bamako. A pool of 48 police officers was trained on the prevention and management of GBV survivors. 30 men from the media, the written and spoken press benefited from capacity building to raise awareness for prevention and report GBV cases to raise awareness among the population.
The support of the national police in the fight against GBV has been strengthened through a validated action plan that clearly defines the intervention strategy and results by 2020.
UNW Cameroon training police officers. The capacity and the level of ownership of police forces as a primary protection actor on violence against women issues has significantly increased in 2017. Ministry of gender staff working in the call center/GBV mobile Units had also been trained while magistrate of the ministry of justice had also been trained on GBV principles.
Liberia: Capacity building for national institutions with training conducted for 83 Women and Children Protection Officers, 65 prosecutors, city solicitors and court officials and 81 health workers.
Representatives of sectoral ministries, state institutions, men and women in the media (even a declaration of commitment for the promotion of women's rights in Niger), local authorities have benefited from capacity building of the UN WOMEN office on GBV, gender and the promotion of women's rights.
All new personnel receive a welcome letter to alert them that they need to complete all mandatory courses within 90 days of starting and these include three online courses related to ethics:
Direct Link /Contact
Prevention of Workplace Harassment, Sexual Harassment, and Abuse of Authority in the Workplace
Online learning programme.
Ethics and Integrity at the United Nations
Online learning programme.
Prevention of Sexual Exploitation and Abuse
Online learning programme.
In addition to mandatory courses, there are non-mandatory quarterly workshops internally on Ethics and the Workplace provided both to HQ and field-based staff, both in person and online.
In 2017, 3 induction/capacity building sessions on GBV tools for around 12 youth-led NGOs active in different areas in Lebanon was organized. The main focus of the induction is Gender Roles & Societal Expectations from View More
In 2017, 3 induction/capacity building sessions on GBV tools for around 12 youth-led NGOs active in different areas in Lebanon was organized. The main focus of the induction is Gender Roles & Societal Expectations from both Women and Men in Public and Private Spheres. Furthermore, to support the role of youth-led and women-led organizations, UN Women organized in partnership with ABAAD a GBV/Masculinity TOT training workshop in October 2017 which involved 9 CSOs. The 3 days’ workshop aimed at building the capacities of participating NGOs on the concepts of human security, gender based violence and masculinities and addressing negative coping mechanism. The CSOs were able to utilize their newly acquired knowledge and technical skills while conducting GBV awareness raising sessions within their community to address stigma against GBV survivors and reduce all forms of violence.
The UN Women Gender Specialist secondee to OCHA has been working closely with national and sub-national cluster coordinators, gender focal points and humanitarian funding partners to improve gender outcomes, including conducting training on Gender and Age Marker for 90 participants.
In Algeria, UN Women has reached an important milestone, in strenghtening the Ministry of National Solidarity, Family and Women Condition's (MSNFCF) capacities to collect data on women and girls victims of violence. A modernized and common data collection framework integrating international guidelines and indicators on WSV, with a focus on SDG 5, was developed by UN Women in partnership with the MSNFCF. The new administrative databased named "AMANE" will allow the MSNFCF and its different structures to collect comprehensive data on Survivors seeking aid from its services. All 54 professionals from the Directorates for Social Action and Solidarity (DASS) and from Women Shelter's have benefited from a specific training on how to use AMANE with a component on gender-based violence and gender issues.
As part of UN Women efforts in supporting the Palestinian police to improve the Family Protection and Juvenile Unit (FPJU) performance in dealing with VAW cases, and supporting the implementation of the capacity building plan of the FJPU, a two-day workshop has been conducted in Jan 2018 on cybercrimes against women and girls. 24 police officers from FJPU and the cybercrime unit have been targeted and agreed on recommendations to improve coordination between both units whe dealing with VAW cases. following that, UNW facilitated a meeting between heads of the specialized units of the cyber-crime and VAW, to reflect on the workshops main points and present the findings and recommendations. Both units agreed to discuss internally proposed arrangements, including the assginment of the FJPU as the first responder for the cyber-crime -violence against women and the aspects of coordination mechanisms between the units when dealing with VAW casesto ensure privacy and confidentiality.
UN Women has reinforced and developed partnerships with key departments for the provision of essential services to WSV. Justice professionals (magistrates and legal social workers) were assessed and trained on women’s access to justice and on human trafficking, and benefited from South-South exchanges with their counterparts from Palestine. The training aimed for the magistrates focused on the role of the security services during the investigation phases, the investigation of trafficking cases, and the identification and protection of victims. The dozen magistrates-experts will, following the training cycle, will conduct similar trainings to the rest of the magistrates within the Ministry of Justice thus ensuring national ownership with regards to human trafficking best practices.
UN Women and AWLN held a series of workshops with parliamentarians and legal practitioners on SGBV and women’s access to justice in order to raise awarness of the legal framework, gaps adn challenges, and how to promote services for survivors.
UN Women supported the Jordanian National Commission for Women in strengthening its positioning with female MPs, organizing three capacity building initiatives during the reporting for members of the women’s caucus in the Parliament and adressing issues related to their role in legislative writing, budget design and oversight, implementation of the SDGs, and constituency-building through online outreach. At the margins of one of the sessions, a dedicated session to review the draft cyber crime law was also conducted.
In March 2018, UN Women held two consultation meetings with civil society and government partners in Baghdad (24-26) and Erbil (27-29) to analyze humanitarian response plans from a gender perspective. The meetings also served to build a foundation for improved coordination and communication between government and civil society, resulting in the prioritization of the needs of women and girls.
UN Women Egypt in collaboration with the Office of the Public Prosecution and UNODC organized training workshops for 160 members of the Public Prosecution on how to effectively prosecute crimes related to violence against women. Topics covered included gender sensitive evidence-gathering and investigation, understanding the relevant legal articles in the Penal code and identifying common legal and practical issues faced by women victims/survivors, in addition to the provision of support and protection of survivors. Furthermore, in collaboration with the National Council for Women (NCW), training workshops were conducted for 250 recent law graduates on a career path to becoming judges to elevate their competencies to adjudicate cases related to VAW. Additionally, capacity development support was provided to the Women’s Complaints office of the NCW to strengthen their capacity to provide legal awareness and support services to women victims/survivors of violence, in addition to 80 employees of government-run women’s shelters and the supervisory ministry, to provide protection and support services to women victims/survivors of violence.
A regional training workshop conducted by DAW, now part of UN Women, in Bangkok, Thailand, 2006 on follow-up to concluding comments of the Committee on the Elimination of Discrimination against Women, included violence against women as one of the three areas of focus. DAW also has a programme of support to countries emerging from conflict (Sierra Leone, Liberia, Haiti and Afghanistan) to enhance their capacity for implementation of the Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of Discrimination against Women and the Beijing Platform for Action. Violence against women is regularly addressed under the framework of this programme.Hide
In its programming to end violence against women, UNIFEM, now part of UN Women, works to support and build the capacity of duty bearers to fulfil their responsibilities to promote and protect women’s human rights, including the right to be free from violence, with primary focus on the judiciary, law enforcement officials, parliamentarians, government ministries, legal practitioners, and departments of statistics.Hide
DAW, now part of UN Women, convenes training activities and workshops on women’s human rights for government officials, judicial officers and representatives of civil society, at national and regional level. For example, DAW has convened judicial colloquia on the application of international human rights law at the domestic level in Santiago, Chile, 2005, Nassau, The Bahamas, 2004, Arusha, Tanzania, 2003, Bangkok, Thailand, 2002 and Vienna, Austria, 1999, which have also addressed the issue of violence against women. Events such as the foregoing serve to highlight legislative and judicial approaches in addressing violence against women, provide opportunities for exchanging experiences and enhancing cooperation among different stakeholders in efforts to eliminate violence against women.Hide
In February 2008, UN-INSTRAW, now part of UN Women, in collaboration with the Geneva Centre for the Democratic Control of Armed Forces (DCAF) and the OSCE Office for Democratic Institutions and Human Rights (ODIHR), published the Gender and Security Reform Toolkit that aim to support gender mainstreaming; the participation of women in the security sector; the capacity-building of the security sector to respond to violence against women. The toolkit includes 12 tools and corresponding practice notes on gender and police reform, gender and border management, gender and justice reform, and gender training for security personnel, among other topics. The Gender and SSR Toolkit was launched during the fifty-second session of the Commission on the Status of Women. Advocacy is being carried out among Member States and other stakeholders to encourage the use of the toolkit in ongoing security sector reform processes.Hide
UNIFEM, now part of UN Women, provided capacity development to the Burundian police and judiciary to improve protection mechanisms for survivors of violence against women and to civil society partners, working on violence against women in Indonesia, Thailand, Timor-Leste and the Philippines. It also supported the development of a training course, "Empowerment, HIV and violence against women in the Caribbean." As part of the Safe Cities Programme, UNIFEM and Red Mujer y Habitat supported an online learning course, “Urban violence, insecurity and discrimination”.Hide
In Burundi, UNIFEM, now part of UN Women, , UNDP, UNESCO and UNICEF worked together to provide training and reporting assistance for civil society organizations and police to improve statistics and data collection on cases of gender-based violence.Hide
UN-HABITAT and UNIFEM, now part of UN Women, held a joint workshop during the International Seminar “Cities without Violence, Safe Cities for Women and Girls”, in July 2008 in Buenos Aires, Argentina, and presented a joint training initiative on women’s safety audits for cities in Latin America and the Caribbean.Hide