Human rights & gender equality

We are working to strengthen the quality, accountability and equity paradigms for women’s rights under the new SDG framework. The UN Gender Theme Group (GTG) is comprised of gender focal points from all UN agencies based in Sri Lanka and is chaired by the Country Representative of UNFPA. The objective of the GTG is to advocate for addressing and mainstreaming gender equality within the UN. In addition the GTG also responds to emerging issues and assesses the effectiveness of policy and practice which has a gender impact. The work of the GTG is expected to contribute to gender sensitivity in the UNDAF, communications and advocacy and ensure an improved understanding of gender issues in the Sri Lankan context.

We are working to strengthen the quality, accountability and equity paradigms for women’s rights under the new SDG framework.

The UN Gender Theme Group (GTG) is comprised of gender focal points from all UN agencies based in Sri Lanka and is chaired by the Country Representative of UNFPA. The objective of the GTG is to advocate for addressing and mainstreaming gender equality within the UN. In addition the GTG also responds to emerging issues and assesses the effectiveness of policy and practice which has a gender impact. The work of the GTG is expected to contribute to gender sensitivity in the UNDAF, communications and advocacy and ensure an improved understanding of gender issues in the Sri Lankan context.

The National Forum Against Gender-based Violence

The National Forum against Gender-Based Violence Sri Lanka was set up in 2005 following a consultation with selected agencies working on gender–based violence (GBV). The main objective of forming the Forum was to facilitate greater coordination, sharing of information/ resources and to strengthen multi-sectoral responses to GBV during the aftermath of the Tsunami. At present, the National Forum against GBV is a collective of 53 agencies comprising of the Government, United Nations, national and international non-governmental organizations, community-based organizations and individual experts.

With the leadership of UNFPA as the Chair of the Forum, the Forum is now the only national level platform for coordinated advocacy and collective actions against GBV in Sri Lanka. The Forum has three subcommittees. The First Sub Committee Focuses on Strengthening Law and Policy on GBV. The Second Sub Committee Focuses on Enhancing institutional responses to GBV, and the third Sub Committee focuses on creating knowledge and bringing about attitudinal changes on GBV.

Peacebuilding at a Grassroots Level - we are coordinating mechanisms of Peacebuilding by targeting communities in nine districts that have high numbers of female headed households and war widows.

GBV Case Referral System

  • Creation of a National GBV referral system with the Ministry of Child Affairs and Women’s Development to support the development of a governmental case referral system to assist survivors of GBV to get support from service providers
  • Development of Standard Operating Procedures (SOPs) for Women Development Officers (WDO’s)on the referral system by publishing, distributing and conducting capacity development trainings in the three pilot districts.
  • Development of a mobile phone based “Emergency App” - a tri-lingual app to assist women on ‘next steps for help’ when faced with GBV.

GBV and Data

As a centre for data excellence, UNFPA works closely with partners to establish a database to analyze GBV trends and patterns within Sri Lanka. We do this by:

  • Supporting the Ministry of Child Development and Women’s Affairs to collect data at the Divisional, District, Provincial and National levels to create a centralized baseline government system, which can monitor data linked from multiple data sources.
  • Conducting and disseminating information of a forensic pathology study on sexual violence in Sri Lanka.
  • Capacity building of community based service providers, including local NGO’s and women’s shelters, to collect data and to mainstream them into the national database.
  • Provide hardware support via the provision of tablets for Women Development Officers to collect data on GBV.

Implementing Partners

The Ministry of Health, Nutrition and Indigenous Medicine

 Ministry of Women’s and Child Affairs

Publications/Reports

Gender and Development in Sri Lanka: Implications for Policy and Action

G2G Pre-Brief: Investing in women