Child protection

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The first regional consultation on HIV and gender-based violence of West and Central Africa was held in Dakar, Senegal, in September 2013. Coordinated by the Athena network and supported by a number of UN agencies – UN Women, UNFPA, UNAIDS, UNICEF and UNDP – the workshop was attended by delegations from Burundi, Cameroon, Côte d'Ivoire, DRC, Ghana, Senegal and Nigeria (resource country). The UNAIDS Agenda for Accelerated Country Action for Women, Girls, Gender Equality and HIV served as the reference document for the meeting.

West and Central Africa is the region in the world which is most affected by conflict and natural disasters. As a result, gender-based violence is widespread, whether in the form of sexual violence or the use of sex as a survival strategy. As little work is being done in this area, it was of utmost importance to initiate reflection and develop response strategies. The countries that took part in the consultation developed action plans for engaging men and boys as partners in the fight against gender-based violence and HIV. The implementation of these plans is a first step for the protection of women and girls in the region.

The meeting also highlighted the too often neglected linkages between gender-based violence and HIV. The report of the meeting can be downloaded here.




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