Primarily, our work supports women and girls in war and conflict regions who have experienced or face the threat of gender-based violence, particularly sexualised violence. The idea is to give those affected a chance to take charge of their own lives in spite of having experienced degrading and destructive violence. They need to be strengthened sufficiently for them to play an effective role in shaping their post-war society.
In order to provide comprehensive support for survivors of sexualised and other violence, we work together at local, regional and national levels with a range of different actors in the respective societies. These include family members, religious authorities and village elders, and the staff of police forces, courts, ministries, schools and hospitals. Often it is necessary to exercise an influence on values, norms and behaviour in order to make communities and politically responsible persons work towards an improvement in the situation of women and girls. These women and girls will only receive adequate support if all of these actors interact with them in a respectful and solidaric way and if the offers of assistance from state and civil society institutions complement each other meaningfully.
Our international project work also indirectly supports people and civil society groups in the immediate surroundings of the women, as well as the post-war society as a whole. In the mid- to long-term, everyone benefits if there are improvements in the situation of women and girls.