Overview of pilot project to map assistance and services available to victims of sexual exploitation and abuse in 13 countries

stamp issued to raise awareness worldwide regarding the problem of sexual exploitation and abuse

This stamp was issued to raise awareness worldwide regarding the problem of sexual exploitation and abuse and to address the stigma and discrimination that victims face. It was first issued on 15 March 2019 as a definitive edition by the United Nations Postal Administration. Artist/Chris Gash (USA).

Pursuant to the Secretary-General’s request (A/72/751, paragraph 28), that a system-wide comprehensive mapping be undertaken of victims’ rights approaches and services available to victims, the Office of the Victims’ Rights Advocate initiated a pilot project to map assistance and services in thirteen countries in different field settings and regions in which the United Nations operates. The project builds on the work already undertaken in this area, and provides an overview of gaps, overlaps, lessons-learned and best practices on the legal, medical, psycho-social, safety, shelter and livelihood support being provided to victims.

Main findings of this analysis, captured in one-page country summaries below, provide a baseline for the development of a victim-centred approach and include recommendations to strengthen the United Nations’ response. The mapping identified both internal and external capacities available to provide assistance and support to victims of sexual exploitation and abuse, as well as associated/related risk factors, gaps and challenges. The work on each country was developed through desk reviews, interviews with, and/or responses to questionnaires completed by relevant entities, and country visits undertaken by the Office of the Victims’ Rights Advocate, supported by Field Victims’ Rights Advocates/Senior Victims’ Rights Officer in the four countries where they are deployed. These visits included consultations with senior United Nations officials, members of inter-agency protection from sexual exploitation and abuse networks, implementing partners, civil society organizations and other stakeholders.

As of 31 March 2020, when the project was completed, the worldwide COVID-19 pandemic had broadly impacted the support and assistance the United Nations and implementing partners are able to provide to victims of sexual exploitation and abuse. Measures to enforce social distancing have affected victims’ access to reporting channels and services relating to gender-based violence and sexual and reproductive health and rights. Accordingly, the uncertainty of the duration and full extent of the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic must be considered in reviewing the information provided in these summaries.

 

All summaries are in PDF format