Gender equality and women’s empowerment are at the very heart of the UNFPA work, fulfilling vision of the ICPD and MDGs. Enhancement of sexual and reproductive health and reproductive rights goes hand in hand with women’s empowerment and gender equality.
The ICPD calls on countries to “take full measures” to eliminate exploitation, abuse, harassment and violence against women, adolescents and children (para. 4.9). And it calls on men to take shared responsibility for parenting, valuing children of both sexes equally, educating them and preventing violence against them. It also urges actions to ensure that men actively participate with women in responsible behaviour in sexual and reproductive matters (para. 4.27).
In Kosovo as well as worldwide, gender-based discrimination and violence undermine women’s opportunities and deny them the ability to fully exercise their fundamental human rights and to play a powerful role in sustainable development and poverty eradication.
Besides UNFPA advocacy for reproductive rights to be granted fully and equally disregarding gender, UNFPA seeks to enhance the rights of women and young girls by working to eliminate gender based violence (GBV).
Based on the National Action Plan and Strategy against Domestic Violence in Kosovo, UNFPA Kosovo implements activities that help to minimize GBV:
- Building institutional capacity of the health sector to address GVB through development and adoption of curricula and protocols;
- Community based outreach to increase population awareness on the negative and harmful consequences of GBV through peer-to-peer sessions, through media, engaging religious leaders;
- Cooperate with civil society organizations working with GBV related issues and build their capacities (prevention, counseling, care for survivors, shelters, etc.);
- Advocacy efforts to policymakers on GBV issues
- Active participation in advocacy activities of the Security and Gender Group (SGG)