Name and leading organization
UNFPA, Osmangazi University.
Target VG and type of host community
Forcibly displaced women and girls.
- Socialize and re-build their social networks;
- Receive social support;
- Acquire contextually relevant skills;
- Access safe and non-stigmatizing multi-sectorial GBV response services (psychosocial, legal, medical);
- Receive information on issues relating to women’s rights, health, and services
The creation of women and girls safe spaces (WGSS) has emerged as a key strategy for the protection and empowerment of women and girls affected by the Syrian crisis. A safe space is a formal or informal place where women and girls feel physically and emotionally safe. The term ‘safe,’ in the present context, refers to the absence of trauma, excessive stress, violence (or fear of violence), or abuse. These spaces may take different names such as women centers, women community centers, or listening and counseling centers, to name a few. Women safe spaces are not the same as shelters or safe spaces at reception centers or one-stop centers. In most societies, women have limited space to meet, and public spaces are often inhabited largely by men. Traditionally, women’s responsibilities include taking care of children, cooking, carrying out household chores, and generally looking after the family. While these roles may change during crisis, where women may find themselves working or becoming the breadwinner, they remain responsible for the household nevertheless. In the Syrian context, women have become more isolated as a consequence of the crisis. Their mobility has been curbed significantly. Women and their family members reported having limited movement of women and girls outside the home due to fear of sexual violence, harassment, and indiscriminate attacks. In Turkey, UNFPA established a women safe space in close collaboration with the camp’s women committee. The aim of the space was to empower women to break out of their social isolation. The space became a place for women to share their issues, socialize, and take part in informal awareness-raising. Being linked to the women committee provided an opportunity for them to solve any camp-related problems with the camp management. Further information on the WGSS services could be found here.