Photo: Leli Blagonravova/UNDP

Recognizing that the pandemic has been exacerbating inequalities in Georgian society, UNDP partnered with the Government Administration to raise public awareness on state services that protect and support survivors of domestic and gender-based violence. Outreach efforts have been particularly focused on reaching internally displaced persons.  

A six-month campaign is covering ten collective centres for internally displaced persons located in the Imereti, Samegrelo and Shida Kartli regions. In June, UNDP organized public events in Gori, Tskaltubo and Zugdidi, bringing together over 200 displaced women and youth.

“Domestic and gender-based violence is a shadow pandemic that affects the most vulnerable people,” noted Anna Chernyshova, UNDP Acting Head. “Women living in closed settings, like collective centres for the displaced, are particularly at risk of violence. Poor access to information and resources makes things even worse and prevents them from accessing vital services that can help them stay safe. UNDP is working in collective centres for displaced persons and in other vulnerable communities to raise awareness of available services and to help take steps towards a violence-free society.”

“The pandemic has increased the risk of domestic violence. Supporting the vulnerable and protecting those who need it most is a government priority,” said Maka Peradze, Head of Human Rights Secretariat of the Government Administration. “State programmes offer a range of services that prevent domestic violence, protect people at risk and ensure that survivors receive rehabilitation and other aid. It is crucial to make this information widely available and accessible by every citizen, especially those in vulnerable communities.”

A recent UN survey showed that less than 50 percent of Georgian women are aware of domestic violence relief services, and only one in three knows about shelters and crisis centres. Awareness is especially low in collective centres for the displaced and in other vulnerable, high-risk communities.

This awareness-raising campaign rights is part of UNDP’s wider support for pandemic recovery and gender equality. The campaign draws on UNDP internal emergency funds and funding from the Government of Sweden.

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Photo: Leli Blagonravova/UNDP
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