UN Supports Rehabilitation of Women's Shelters in Palestine

    Wahyu Dwi Anggoro - 19 November 2020 12:04 WIB
    UN Supports Rehabilitation of Women's Shelters in Palestine
    Illustration (Photo:Medcom.id)
    Jakarta: As part of the Government of Canada funded HAYA Joint Programme, UN Women and UNOPS, in close cooperation with national partners, supported the rehabilitation of four shelters delivering services for women and girls who are at risk or survivors of violence. 

    These shelters are located in the West Bank and the Gaza Strip, including the Mehwar Centre for the Protection and Empowerment of Women and Families in Bethlehem, Al Bayt Al Aman in Nablus, Bait Al Tawarea in Jericho, and the Hayat Centre in Gaza.

    Following rehabilitation, the shelters are now equipped with child-friendly spaces; are more inclusive, gender-sensitive and environmentally friendly; and offer a higher level of quality services to address the needs of women and girls.

    According to a UN Women study, support for shelters is especially needed during the covid-19 crisis.

    With the pandemic and subsequent rapid increase in cases of violence, shelters and support centres worldwide are closing or struggling to take on new cases, provide support for existing cases, and maintain necessary operating standards.

    "Protecting women and girls from violence, and supporting services to survivors, is a global priority for the Government of Canada," said Robin Wettlaufer, the Representative of Canada in Ramallah, in a press release on Wednesday.

    "These shelters will provide critical services, at a time when we have seen an increase in gender-based violence due to challenges posed by covid-19," the official stated.

    As a result of this support and rehabilitation work, almost 250 women annually have been provided with safety, food, hygiene, health care, and education in the four shelters, in addition to about 600 women who receive annual psychosocial and legal support in Gaza. 

    The shelters are now better equipped to continue providing quality services to survivors of violence and help their reintegration to society.

    In Palestine, one in three women (29 per cent) has experienced one form of violence by their husbands. 44 per cent of girls aged 12 to 17 years old have been subjected to physical violence, according to the Preliminary Results of the Violence Survey in the Palestinian Society 2019. Since the outbreak of covid-19, this has intensified, further increasing the need to end violence against women and girls in Palestine and worldwide.

    (WAH)

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