Concern Worldwide’s Work on GBV
Concern Worldwide is a non-governmental international humanitarian organisation dedicated to the reduction of suffering and working towards the ultimate elimination of extreme poverty in the world’s poorest countries. Concern currently operates in 24 countries. Our aim is to help people living in extreme poverty achieve major improvements in their lives which last and spread without ongoing support from Concern. To achieve this we engage in long term development work, build resilience, respond to emergencies and seek to address the root causes of poverty through our development education and advocacy.
We believe that inequality, particularly gender inequality, is a key barrier and maintainer which prevents people from moving out of extreme poverty. We recognise that GBV is symptomatic of deep-rooted gender inequality and we focus on integrating approaches to addressing gender inequality across our programmes.
To address GBV we believe that it is crucial to address the underlying gender norms, roles and responsibilities that reinforce stereotyped masculinities and perpetuate violence against women and girls. Social constructs and unequitable gendered identities constrain the behaviour of women and men, maintain power imbalances and reinforce the prevalence of violent and oppressive practices towards women and girls.
As a key prevention approach we are implementing gender transformative programming engaging men and women, boys and girls to transform unequal power relations and challenge the underlying structures that perpetuate inequalities. We are currently working in partnership with Sonke Gender Justice, a South African organisation to scale up our gender transformative work.
Within our education programme we know that school-related gender-based violence (SRGBV) is currently a major risk to children accessing quality education and succeeding in their learning. Concern embeds interventions to address SRGBV and gender equality in its education programming and is currently engaged in research on a ‘Safe Learning Model’ in Sierra Leone
Increasingly we are working in conflict contexts and in times of crisis and displacement the risk of violence against women and girls is heightened along with engagement in negative coping strategies. In countries such as Turkey and Lebanon where we are responding to the Syrian Crisis, we provide multiple practical needs along with psycho-social support and case management. In Lebanon we have a programme that also engages with men to influence changes in social norms, attitudes and behaviours. Psychosocial support is also provided to women and children and increasingly our work across countries includes PSS, a critical intervention to support people through the trauma they have experienced and continue to.