By Gladys Kole
The United State Agency for International Development (USAID) has supported the United Nations Population Fund (UNFPA) with a grant of 300,000 USD to establish a safe house in Juba, for the Sexual Gender Based Violence survivors.
The one-year initiative is aimed at promoting positive masculinity across Central Equatoria and provide lifesaving shelter and related services for GBV survivors in juba, with a long-term plan to expand these services across South Sudan as well as working with the community members such as boda-boda riders to build support most particularly among men for GBV prevention efforts.
Kate Crawford the USAID Mission Director in South Sudan said that “Prevention, protection and care response to GBV are needed to create a safe South Sudan for women and families.
“Our partnership with UNFPA will address these critical elements and move South Sudan towards reaching UN sustainable goal 5 of achieving the gender equality and empowering all women and girls.” She said.
According to 2021 data from the GBV information management system, physical violence accounted for 37 percent total in South Sudan, followed by sexual violence at 25 percent of total reported cases.
Nearly a quarter of 23 percent of GBV survivors were girls younger than 18, which indicates the need for age and gender specific response services.
Meanwhile Dr. Ademola Olajide the UNFPA Country Representative for South Sudan stated that while empowering women and girls about their rights, they also need men and boys as allies for gender equality adding that this partnership aims to bring the discourse on positive masculinity among the young population of South Sudan.
“From our experience supporting GBV survivors at a one stop center we see the acute need for a safe space for survivors who have no other options to meet this urgent gap, with support from USAID, UNFPA will establish a transitory shelter service for GBV survivors in juba,” he said.
“The transitory shelter will serve as a safe space for GBV survivors fleeing life-threatening situations and will operate based on the standard operating procedures set by the ministry of gender, child and social welfare in collaboration with UNFPA,” he added.