Gender-Based Violence (GBV) and Economic Empowerment of Girls and Women in East Africa
The East African Civil Society Organizations’ Forum (EACSOF) Kenya Chapter, Forum for African Women Educationalists (FAWE) and the Mentoring and Empowerment Programme for Young Women (MEMPROW) have as such partnered with the Gender and Community Development Department at the East African Community Secretariat to establish mechanisms that can mitigate the effects of COVID-19 and address the GBV challenge in the region. The objective of the initiative is to strengthen monitoring, reporting and accountability mechanisms of Regional and Sub-regional bodies on GBV as well as practices that promote the economic empowerment of women and girls through:
- Establishing a Regional GBV Sector Working Group.
- Holding bi-weekly virtual meetings with the Regional GBV Working Group on prevention and response to GBV during the COVID-19 Pandemic.
- Developing a tool for the Working Group to fill in their GBV interventions during COVID-19 period.
- Continuous Assessments on Continuous Assessments on GBV hotspots and economically hard-hit areas for women in business around the region and cross- border areas.
- Partner with Stakeholders and Media to report GBV cases and to seek redress for the victims
This initiative takes cognizance of the commitments EAC Partner States have made in Article 6(d) of the Treaty for the Establishment of the East African Community to adhere to the principles of democracy, the rule of law, accountability, transparency, social justice, equal opportunities, gender equality, as well as recognition, promotion and protection of human and people’s rights. Pursuant to the above provision, the EAC has further developed the EAC Gender Policy that places the elimination of Gender-Based Violence in all settings as a core goal for all governments and stakeholders and the economic empowerment of women in the region as a major pathway to development.