The Combating Gender Based Violence in Bangladesh (CGBV) project recognizes that prevention of violence requires sustained and comprehensive action at individual, family, organizations and societal levels. The project will focus on primary prevention, stopping violence before it occurs, as it is a strategic approach to ending violence against women and girls.
CGBV intends to create a holistic framework of integrated and mutually reinforcing interventions to address the underlying causes and drivers of violence against women and girls; make duty bearers accountable to comply with international and national obligations addressing violence against women and promote their equal status in the society.
Simultaneously, the Project is enhancing the capacity of civil society to advocate and influence policies for a violence free society and strengthen women’s voice and agency. UN Women is also engaging and partnering with district based and high-level leadership of key institutions such as local government, education institutions and workplaces to prevent and address violence against women. Finally, the project is creating a strong and expanded knowledge base system to inform prevention policy and programming.
Specifically, the CGBV Project focuses on the following Outcomes:
Outcome 1: National and local laws and policies to prevent violence against women are strengthened, if needed, and implemented
Outcome 2: Favourable social norms, attitudes and behaviours are promoted to prevent violence against women and enhance women’s economic empowerment.
Outcome 3: Policy and programming is increasingly informed by an expanded knowledge base on effective approaches to prevention of violence against women
Evidence from research and programmatic experience shows that violence against women and girls in low-income and middle-income countries can be prevented through interventions that target the key drivers of violence in these settings—unequal gender-power relations—and the way these inequalities shape individual and collective attitudes, norms, and behaviours.
The CGBV initiative is proposed as a holistic effort, involving women, men, government, civil society, and the private sector, to create an environment, within families and outside, that supports women’s empowerment and equality. The change model recognizes that prevention of gender-based violence needs a long-term approach that addresses the belief systems and social and institutional practices that allow violent behavior against women to continue.
CGBV builds on the integrated ecological model which highlights the interaction of factors at each level of the social ecology – individual, family/household, community, society/culture – and the ways in which they contribute to gender based violence (Heise, 1998, 2011). Through interventions designed to promote change at each level, the project aims to contribute to longer-term changes in the underlying causes of gendered violence while supporting more immediate and concrete improvements to improve women’s safety at home, at work and in the community.
In order to inform strategy development and CGBV programme design, UN Women conducted a study titled, “Effective Approaches to Preventing Violence Against Women (VAW): A research on programmes and interventions preventing gender-based violence in Bangladesh”. As a result of the study, a prevention strategy was developed to provide strategic directions on the programme implementation.
UN Women is looking for a Responsible Party (RP) to implement the CGBV project by jointly designing, adapting, implementing and measuring prevention interventions at community and family level in the districts of Pathuakali, Bogura and Cumilla as well as with educational institutions. As per global evidence, the prevention interventions need to be multi-level, multi sectoral and aiming at gender transformative changes. The responsible party will work hand-in-hand with UN Women to adapt and implement interventions to -generate evidences on what works to prevent violence in Bangladesh, through rigorous research, monitoring and evaluation. For this purpose, the responsible party will be expected to work with several partners and in close consultation with UN Women technical experts to ensure coordination and adaptation of prevention interventions at multiple levels.
The prevention interventions will be tested both at community and family level as well as with 6 educational institutions in the three implementation districts. More specifically, the Responsible Party will work with UN Women to design, pilot and implement a ‘whole of school approach’ at 6 educational institutions level to prevent sexual harassment and other forms of violence against women, through institutional and behavioural change. The responsible party will implement already identified prevention interventions of SASA!Together at community level and family based Stepping Stones approach, called Sammanit Jeevan.
The identified prevention interventions are as following:
Brief description of interventions
SASA! Together – Community Based Approach
The CGBV Project is adapting the SASA! Together intervention model through a collaboration with Raising Voices. At its core, SASA! is a community mobilisation approach that engages all stakeholders across communities to rethink and reshape unequal power relations and discriminatory social norms.
SASA! Is an intervention that has been implemented, adapted and integrated in programs in over 20 countries around the world. The original SASA! model was developed in Uganda to prevent and respond to gender-based violence against women and HIV. The newly developed SASA! Together is an evolution of SASA! which builds on over a decade of learning, integrated new and simplified tools and is more relevant to GBV programming and strategies in diverse communities.
The CGBV Project will therefore have the space and technical assistance to design and implement the community-based intervention in a culturally and contextually responsive manner in Bangladesh. UN Women has engaged with an accredited trainer of Raising Voices to support all phases of SASA!Together, from adaptation, to implementation and monitoring. The trainer will also train the Masters trainers pool that will be identified by the RP
Sammanit Jeevan – Family-Based Intervention
Sammanit Jeevan” is a participatory, group based, family-oriented workshop series designed in 2016. The Samannit Jeevan manual is developed as a part of the VSO’s One Community One Family (OCOF) project which is designed mainly for trainers/facilitators for training and sensitizing community members to play active role in promoting harmony within families and reducing violence against women and girls.
The Sammanit Jeevan Gender Transformative Norms training manual is adapted from ‘Zindagii Shoista’, a model developed by CESVI and International Alert in Tajikistan and on the South African adaptation of ‘Stepping Stones’. This manual was contextualized and adopted into Nepali context by VSO Nepal.
The CGBV Project will adapt the Sammanit Jeevan Gender Transformative Manual to the local context in the selected districts in Bangladesh as the project’s family-based intervention.
The manual provides relevant content to the Bangladeshi context by exploring extended and multi-layered family relationships that are not often touched upon in GBV prevention trainings. The manual addresses gender, relationship, family conflict, violence, communication and relationship skill. The Sammanit Jeevan manual can give opportunities to know the respective community value and attitudes towards gender and relationship within their family, to build their knowledge, to develop their skills to help them to communicate with others in transforming gender norms and build a healthy life.
UN Women Campus Based Guidelines for university-based interventions
UN Women has developed guidelines for campus-based interventions to prevent and respond to campus-based GBV . The guidelines are designed for global implementation and are referenced in various international, regional and national commitments to provide safe education environments for men and women. The CGBV Project plans to employ the Campus Based Guidelines, along with the UNiTE Changemakers toolkit to develop a whole of school and university GBV prevention strategy in Bangladesh.
The UN Women Campus Based Guidelines contain guiding principles and tools for implementation in different contexts. On this bases, UN Women has been developing a Whole of School Approach Toolkit that will be finalised together with the RP. Part of this toolkit is the UNiTE Changemakers manual that provides a more practical and focused resource to a gender transformative approach. As part of this, the CGBV project will address this through regular sessions in the educational institutes, observation of campaigns, by-standers programmes, engaging men and boys as active agent of change, engaging girl’s in different innovative interventions, such self-defence course and sports etc.
Finally, in 2019, UN Women launched the Innovators against GBV (IAGBV) Competition, inviting young women innovators to develop ground-breaking innovations to identify solutions to end violence against women. Under the theme, “Think equal, build smart, innovate for change,” two winning teams developed their ideas. One team prototyped of low-cost biodegradable cotton sanitary napkins (called ‘Charu’) to empower survivors of GBV, by engaging them in the production, and raise awareness about GBV through product marketing. The RP will support IAGBV through engaging identification of GBV survivor and developing their skills and capacity and enocurage women’s empowerment.
Description of required results
The responsible party will contribute to the following project result areas:
Outcome 1: National and local laws and policies to prevent violence against women are strengthened, if needed, and implemented; and
Outcome 2: Favourable social norms, attitudes and behaviours are promoted to prevent violence against women and enhance women’s economic empowerment
Outcome 3: Policy and programming is increasingly informed by an expanded knowledge base on effective approaches to prevention of violence against women
More specifically, the Responsible party is expected to focus on the following:
Key Areas of Work:
Form a Technical team for SASA! Adaptation. A technical team from UN Women and the RP will be formed to institutionalize, look after the SASA! Together adaptation, implementation and monitoring to measure the continuous change of behavior at community level. This team will be in charge of adapting context specific guidelines, tools, IEC materials with technical support from Raising Voices, to ensure fidelity with SASA! Together. The RP will also be responsible to adapt SASA! Together tools to develop and implement strategies of Local Activism, Community Leadership and Institutional Strengthening.
SASA! Set UP Phase: The RP will be in charge of identifying and engage with community activists, community leaders and institutions allies for supporting prevention intervention strategies. The identified community activists and leaders will be engaged in community level sessions and activities to strengthen their knowledge and skills as well as their influence in the community.
Identify CBO: The RP will be in charge to reach out and strengthen existing community-based organisations (CBOs) and networks of women to involve them in the CBOs. Focus of the intervention will be around gender equality, human rights, women’s empowerment, VAW prevention, community organising basic project management and monitoring, negotiation, etc. The Responsible Party will lead in the identification of relevant community groups members and maintain databases of all participants, the trainings they received, and activities conducted in the communities. Village and ward level government representatives that work side-by-side with the grassroots women’s rights organisations and CBOs will also be engaged by the Responsible Party to implement community activities and linking them with concerned institutions.
Arrange consultation at local level and develop the capacity of community leaders and setting the rule for SASA together. The responsible party will be in in charge of arranging at least 3 local consultation meetings in the designated project location to share the project objective, the project implementation modality, sharing the role of designated leaders, activist and support groups, connecting with them with Nari Nirjaton Protirodh Committee (NNPC) and service providers.
Support community-based advocacy and behaviour-change communications – working with both government and nongovernment members of the community, the RP will coordinate community campaigns and activities of the CGBV organised groups such as consultations with different religious groups, community theatre and other forms of popular education to promote gender transformative messages, increase bystander action, and decrease the acceptability of all forms of violence against women.
Conduct Research and Monitoring: SASA! Together is based on a continuous measuring of changes through the conduction of Community Assessment Surveys (CAS), that is one of the monitoring tools developed by Raising Voices. The RP and selected masters trainers will be trained on SASA! Together on tools developed to measure the change.
Key Deliverables for Community based intervention
Adaptation, Implementation, Monitoring and Learnings for SASA!Together
1. Identify a Pool of trainers to be trained on SASA! Together module
2. Identification of local activist, community leaders and institutions in the intervention communities for SASA! Together tools
3. Formation of CGBV village support groups in project sites trained on Community Mobilisation
4. Measure and monitor the change at community level through SASA! Together tools
5. Strenghten coordination between community activists /leaders and local stakeholders
6. Conduct advocacy activities and celebration of campaigns
7. Provide support to Innovators Against Gender Based Violence (IaGBV) for capacity development of GBV survivors and link them with IGA
8. Conduct women safety audit with community members
9. Conduct 4 Community Assessment Survey (CAS) as a part of learning and assessment of SASA! Together tools
10. Conduct monthly progress of project intervention and M&E report and quarterly reports based on results based management.
Key Areas of Work:
Form a Technical team for Sammanit Jeevan Adaptation. A technical team from UN Women and the RP will be formed to institutionalize, conduct the Sammanit Jeevan (SJ) adaptation, implementation and monitoring to measure the continuous change of behavior at individual, community level. This team will oversee adapting context specific guidelines, tools, IEC materials with technical support from VSO Nepal to ensure fidelity with Sammanit Jeevan (SJ) modules.
Select Community Leaders/ Community volunteers/ facilitators: The RP will be in charge of identifying Community leaders/ Community volunteers/ facilitators in 3 project locations. They will be trained by RP on SJ modules to equipped them with the skills and knowledge to conduct community sessions.
Identify Groups/ families for the family based interventions: The RP will be in charge to identify and reach out the community groups (Men, women and Adolescent) and families (mother in law, daughter in law, sister in law, having adolescent boys and girls, husband, father in law etc.). Focus of the intervention will be around gender equality, human rights, conflict and healthy relationship, savings, home management, shared family responsibility, women’s empowerment, VAW prevention and monitoring, negotiation, etc.
Conduct capacity development of Community Facilitators/ leaders and Monitoring: The RP and selected masters trainers will develop the capacity of Community facilitators/leaders on Sammanit Jeevan for different groups at family level. In addition, the RP will conduct continuous monitoring of group sessions and provide mentoring to improve their relationship.
Monitoring and tracking the change: The RP will be in charge of monitoring the implementation of family based intervention. This will be conducted trough pre and post evaluation at the beginning and end of each module.
Arrange consultations at local level. The RP will be in in charge of arranging at least 3 local consultation meetings in the designated project location to share the Sammanit Jeevan interventions, learnings an dlessons learned.
Key Deliverables for family based intervention
Adaptation, Implementation and Monitoring of Sammanit Jeevan
1. Identify families in intervention villages for implementation of Sammanit Jeevan tools and coordinate with family based community groups
2. Field testing of contextualized modules in the community families
3. Orient community leaders/community facilitators / community volunteers on the contextualized version of training manuals of SJ
4. Mobilize the community and conduct of consultations in intervention villages
5. Conduct monitoring of community sessions to track changes in attitudes, beliefs and behaviours
6. Provide mentoring support to the community leader/ Facilitators/volunteers
7. Submit M&E progress reports and implementation progress report.
Piloting and implementing a whole-of-school approach, CGBV will implement interventions to better prevent and respond to sexual harassment (SH) and other forms of sexual violence against women and girls in universities and other public spaces. The Responsible Party will develop, with technical support from UN Women, interventions and behaviour-change advocacy and campaigns.
Key Areas of Work:
Support the selected Universities to develop institutional policies and mechanisms to address sexual harassment (SH) and other forms of school-based violence against women and girls. Using results from the research that has been conducted by the selected University on SH and VAW in educational institutions, the Responsible Party will conduct VAW Prevention training for University management and teachers and support the university to strengthen the relevant response system and referral with service providers. Based on training and tools provided by UN Women, the RP will train teachers and students to conduct Women’s Safety Audit at educational institution level; and the RP and will be responsible to support the university to advocate and lobby university administration to put in place concrete safety recommendations and do the follow up to ensure the safety for women and girls
With technical support from UN Women, design and conduct capacity development for the student leaders, and implement behaviour change interventions. The training programme should involve students, emphasising everyone’s role as change agents and positive role models that promote gender equal relations, women’s empowerment, and violence-free campuses. Examples include- Change Makers toolkit, bystander training and self-defence programmes. The Responsible Party shall plan for and implement the training programme in collaboration with the relevant university focal person/department to also support building management and staff capacity to support student-led campaigns on SH.
Key Deliverables for Educational Institutions:
1. Co-Design and test Whole of School Approach toolkit
2. Conduct SH and VAW Prevention Training for selected Universities and colleges
3. Develop and endorse a Zero Tolerance to Sexual Harassment Policy
4. Conduct Safety Audits and share the result of Safety audit findings in different institutions with students, teachers and management and do follow up
5. Behaviour-change trainings for university/college students, Prevention committee and Multi Stakeholder Alliance (MSA) members
6. Celebrate national and international campaign events like International Women’s Day and 16 Days of activism
7. Develop and test innovative approach to foster women’s empowerment, through self-defence, sports and other interventions
8. Monthly M&E monitoring report and quarterly financial / budget report
Proposal can be submitted by an individual organization or a consortium of organizations meeting the eligibility criteria. For a consortium, a lead organization needs to be selected, which would be the ultimate accountable organizations, if the contract is awarded.
The organizations should fulfil the following requirements:
 The Asia-Pacific UNiTE Campaign Secretariat, together with a group of Asia-Pacific regional members of the UNiTE Youth Network, have developed this regionally-focused, youth-friendly toolkit for peer educators to facilitate discussions on gender equality, violence against women healthy relationships and positive activism. The toolkit is translated to different languages including Bangla. https://www2.unwomen.org/-/media/field%20office%20eseasia/docs/publications/2014/9/unite_youth_tkit_all_pages.pdf?la=en
 UNFPA, through its Generation Breakthrough project conducted gender sensitivity training for adolescents using the Gender Education Movement curriculum, which was developed by ICRW in India and contextualised in Bangladesh. It was implemented in 350 schools including in Bogura and Patuakhali, however it can be explored how this can be adapted for the University of Comilla in coordination with UNFPA.