The patterns and persistence of Gender Based Violence (GBV) are inter-woven into social norms and power relations. Yet GBV is not only a fundamental violation of human rights, but leaves deep scars on societies that it affects, both in terms of psychosocial trauma, community cohesion and stigmatization of survivors, and development outcomes. The threat of Gender Based Violence (GBV) amplified by the conflict in northeast Nigeria has underscored the findings by numerous scholars that throughout the world, occurrence of GBV is exacerbated when emergency hits. The humanitarian situation in the north east continues to expose communities and Internally Displaced Persons (IDPs) to major protection risks - with limited access to reproductive health and GBV prevention and response services.
This strategy describes and analyses the GBV situation in northeast Nigeria, including prevention, mitigation and response in terms of medical, case management and psychosocial support, safety and security, mental health, access to justice and rule of law (RoL) and coordination, indicating the actual needs, challenges and response. It also includes a detailed and comprehensive plan of action with activities that reflect the priorities and needs identified by the communities and GBV actors. It presents a valuable guide to critical lifesaving interventions that will ensure not only protection of women, girls, boys and men from GBV but empower them to become full functioning individuals in communities. It promotes the principle of inclusiveness and participation of affected individuals and communities to define the parameters for the framework of interventions for GBV prevention, response and mitigation.
The purpose of the development of the strategic framework is to provide guidelines and standardized approaches to GBV prevention, mitigation and response in emergency settings to reduce vulnerability of IDPs, returning refugees and host communities of the North East (NE). It will improve understanding on how to achieve improved outcomes for people living in areas affected by the crisis. The strategy responds to the overall objectives of the Nigeria Humanitarian Response Plan (HRP) and the following strategic objectives for GBV protection;
- Increase access to a comprehensive and well-coordinated GBV response services including livelihood support for survivors.
- Increase awareness and enhance systems for the prevention of GBV including SEA through mitigating risk factor and strengthening community protection strategies.
- Mainstream GBV into all humanitarian response and maintain the updated comprehensive data needed to inform advocacy, planning, implementation and M&E of interventions.
Expected results include the enhanced capacity to better cope with the impacts of conflict and reduced exposure of women, girls, boys and men to violence. The strategy is also aimed at promoting accountability through strengthened coordination, community participation, access to justice, prevention and response through service provision.