National Experts Meet to Review and Reflect on Gender-Based Violence (GBV) Response, Progress and Top Prioritiesaccess
The meeting of the 26th Technical Working Group on Gender – Gender-Based Violence (TWGG-GBV) on 9 June 2022 saw several women’s rights advocates and practitioners gather to discuss the progress and priorities of the National Action Plan on Prevention of Violence Against Women (NAPVAW III). In attendance were representatives from 51 institutions, including ministries, civil society, and development partners, among other stakeholders in Cambodia, who are signatories to NAPVAW III.
The Ministry of Women’s Affairs (MoWA) and UN Women jointly organised this meeting to assemble all relevant stakeholders to share their experiences and learnings from the implementation of the plan, reflect on their achievements to date, and identify priorities for achieving key indicators of the national plan. H.E Hou Samith, Secretary of State of MoWA and Chairperson of the TWGG-GBV, presided over the meeting. She stated that the meeting was an essential medium for knowledge sharing and strategic direction setting for response to GBV in Cambodia and ensuring effective and quality services were available and accessible to survivors in a timely manner. “Violence against women is a vicious form of violation of women’s rights because it immediately endangers the lives of women survivors. It causes long-term damage to the physical, intellectual, mental, sexual, and reproductive health of survivors and their children,” H.E Samith stressed in his opening remarks.
The participants presented and shared progress and updates on the legal assistance services provided to GBV survivors, including achievements, progress made, lessons learned, challenges, and recommendations for the next steps.
“Reducing Gender-Based Violence needs to start from positively influencing and hence changing the negative gender-discriminative stereotype behaviours, from various individuals, groups, communities and across the entire spectrum of our societies” said Mr Connor Floyd, Second Secretary to the Australian Embassy in Cambodia. He encouraged all the representatives to adequately consider the key NAPVAW priorities and integrate these and their respective activities into their annual operations plan. He expressed his optimism in terms of capturing the investment in GBV response well in the 2023 budget planning.
The TWGG-GBV is a national-level coordination mechanism under the leadership of MoWA with technical support from UN Women. Supported by the Australian Government through the Australia-Cambodia Cooperation for Equitable Sustainable Services (ACCESS) Program, the TWGG-GBV provides a platform to relevant stakeholders to come together to fight against GBV, through monitoring of quality service provision, guide the implementation of NAPVAW III, as well as respond to GBV impacts of COVID-19. The deliberations made during the TWGG-GBV meeting will contribute to the overall quality and achievement of the objectives of NAPVAW III – resulting in Cambodian women and girls living a healthy and prosperous life without violence.