Gender and Gender-based Violence (GBV) - Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

Fact Sheet
Bureau of Population, Refugees, and Migration
March 21, 2017


1. Why does PRM require a gender analysis?

PRM prioritizes the unique protection needs of women and children, and recognizes that women and children face heightened risks and vulnerabilities, especially in situations of emergencies. Beginning in 2014, PRM started requiring our partners to include a gender analysis in all project proposals in order to better meet the unique needs of women and girls and improve overall programming outcomes. With this requirement, PRM seeks to effectively integrate gender into its overall policy and programming, empowering our partners to address gender inequalities in the context in which they work, the unique risks women and girls face in these contexts, and how the project or program will reduce or mitigate such risks. The requirement also furthers the goals of the U.S. National Action Plan on Women, Peace, and Security, the U.S. Strategy to Prevent and Respond to Gender-based Violence Globally, U.S. Global Strategy to Empower Adolescent Girls, and the State/USAID Safe from the Start initiative. PRM aims to integrate gender issues and GBV activities into as many refugee assistance programs as possible and believes that one measure of effectiveness of our assistance efforts is the protection and provision of services to women and girls.

2. How is the gender analysis reviewed and assessed?

All submitted proposals that include a gender analysis are reviewed by PRM program officers who assess whether the main criteria laid out in the NGO Guidelines has been met. The key aspects of the review center around whether the partner has demonstrated understanding of relevant gender dynamics, explained risks and vulnerabilities, as well as how their project activities will address identified inequalities. All PRM staff are trained on how to evaluate the gender analysis after which it is given a score and weighed against other applications during proposal review panels. It should be noted that the gender analysis is an important part of receiving a high score and all projects chosen for a funding award must include a gender analysis with the above criteria integrated as part of their final proposal.

3. How are GBV programs and projects evaluated by PRM?

Similar to the above, PRM program officers review GBV program and projects against specific criteria that are used throughout the bureau. In addition, GBV programs and projects are evaluated by an internal technical expert with a background in GBV and gender equality. Scores specified by the regional program officer and technical program officer are compiled and considered alongside other applications during proposal review panels. PRM seeks to maximize the funding of GBV programming in line with existing funding parameters, but will not fund programs or projects that do not meet minimum standards in the GBV field in line with existing guidelines.

4. What is the definition that PRM uses for GBV*?

Gender equality is an issue that remains at the forefront of US government commitments. Yet, there are many pathways to achieving gender equality and women’s empowerment. PRM’s work on gender equality recognizes violence, particularly GBV, as a root cause of inequality and an essential piece of helping women and girls live their full potential. Given various definitions and meanings that exist for GBV, PRM has opted to use the IASC definition which is included here:

“Gender-based violence (GBV) is an umbrella term used to describe any harmful act that is perpetrated against a person’s will, and that is based on socially ascribed (gender) differences between males and females, including sexual violence, domestic violence, child marriage, and many harmful traditional practices.”

5. What are the types of GBV program activities that PRM supports?

In the immediate aftermath of a crisis, PRM aims to support gender-based violence programming that ensures women and girls are safe, can meet their basic needs, and are actively participating in decisions that will affect them. After things have stabilized, PRM-supported programming typically expands to include an increased focus on access and availability of services, resources, and opportunities that allow women and girls to benefit from social, economic, and political rights. In all settings, women and girls should participate and be able to influence programming and implementation, particularly when identifying program activities and strategies that are meaningful and relevant in their current context. The best PRM programs engage women and girls from the outset of an emergency through to development and long-term recovery as this is the only way to ensure that they also benefit from peace and stability. In addition, PRM remains committed to working across the USG as well as with international organization (IO) and non-governmental organization (NGO) partners to continue to develop policies that better addressed the unique needs of displaced women and girls, as well as other vulnerable populations that might be affected by GBV. For information on the types of global programs that PRM funded in FY2016, please see Safe from the Start and GBV innovation factsheets .

6. What opportunities exist to receive funding from PRM?

PRM recognizes that gender integration and addressing GBV are essential and believes that one measure of effectiveness is our ability to protect and provide services to women and girls through targeted and multi-sectoral programming as well as policy and diplomacy. Each year, the bureau funds GBV programs through regional offices as well as allocates specific funding to two targeted GBV initiatives that are focused on leadership, coordination, and innovation and which are meant complement ongoing efforts in our regional responses to address GBV. The first is through a GBV-specific innovation fund that is released every year. These funds are allocated to research institutions, IOs, and NGOs for innovation and learning purposes in the field. This support has led to the development of new evidence-based programming, guidelines and tools, as well as capacity building initiatives that contribute to quality programming and sustainability. The second is through Safe from the Start which is focused on improving the wider humanitarian system to better respond to GBV. This funding is largely allocated to IOs to make systematic and institutional improvements in their approach. This funding is going toward deployment schemes, capacity building and training programs, and effective implementation of the IASC GBV Guidelines. These two initiatives are used to support comprehensive field programming and act as a catalyst to draw attention to GBV as well as increase dialogue and effective response by IOs and NGOs.

7. What is the difference between Safe from the Start and other global programming funded by PRM?

Safe from the Start funding aims to build and strengthen the core capacity of our key humanitarian partners to address GBV from the earliest phases of an emergency. Through this initiative, PRM seeks to transform the international system for humanitarian response so that the needs of women and girls and all those affected by GBV are a priority in crises— never an afterthought. Safe from the Start investments represent the U.S. Government’s commitment under the global Call to Action on Protection from GBV in Emergencies (CtA), of which the U.S. had leadership from 2014-2015.

GBV innovation funds are complementary to Safe from the Start and ongoing efforts in our regional responses in order to advance and professionalize the GBV field. These funds are used differently every year based on the proposals that are submitted with the overall aim of providing critical innovation and learning for the larger GBV community. This support helps to ensure that GBV programs are being implemented in the most effective and evidence-based way possible and that the GBV sector is regularly implementing best practice, using existing and new inter-agency standards, and sharing improvements and advances we learn along the way.

Please note that regional GBV funds fund critical and life-saving GBV programs including a basic package of core services. PRM regional offices also support in-country coordination efforts.

8. How can I share relevant information and who can I contact about emergencies, field-level challenges, concerns, or stories of success?

PRM works closely across the U.S. government as well as with our IO and NGO partners to advance GBV in emergencies. If you would like to share updates, concerns, or suggest areas for improving programming or coordination, please email PRM’s gender equality collective at: PRM-MCEGender&Youth@state.gov

We welcome your feedback and questions as we seek to establish a transparent and inclusive process to move this agenda forward. Please contact Leora Ward if you wish to discuss gender or GBV issues further or have questions on any of the above, at: WARDLS@state.gov

*PRM does not use the acronym SGBV.