Part three: Delivering Better

Maiduguri, Nigeria

A displaced family from north-east Nigeria currently living in Bakassi camp. OCHA/Damilola Onafuwa

Women and girls have greater representation in humanitarian prioritization and response, but more women are needed in leadership roles, and underfunding for GBV mitigation and prevention remains of critical concern.

The enhanced HPC approach has helped to better represent gender, age and disabilities in humanitarian prioritization and response, through the improved collection of disaggregated data.

In 2021, 100 per cent of HNOs reflected analysis of the humanitarian impacts on women and girls and 89 per cent of HNOs reflected GBV risks and impacts, a great improvement from the previous year. Regional- and country-level gender working groups and networks are producing analysis and working to increase the participation of women-led organizations in humanitarian decision-making and programming in Afghanistan, Cameroon, CAR, Chad, Jordan, Myanmar, Nigeria, oPt, Philippines, Somalia, Syria, Ukraine, Yemen and the MENA and Asia-Pacific regions.

Despite this, stronger gender analysis is needed to further place the spotlight on women and girls, particularly those with multiple needs including adolescent girls, young women, and women and girls with disabilities.

Women-led organizations

The first system wide Inter-Agency Humanitarian Evaluation on Gender Equality and the Empowerment of Women and Girls called for greater efforts to address the gap in the representation of women-led organizations in humanitarian decision making. Despite noting progress since 2017, including an uptick in consultations with women, the evaluation concluded that they were still not sufficiently represented.

The ERC has called for the inclusion of women-led CSOs in HCTs to ensure their engagement in humanitarian decision-making processes. The IASC also produced new guidance on ‘Strengthening participation, representation and leadership of local and national actors in IASC humanitarian coordination mechanisms’. Enhanced efforts from partners have resulted in increased engagement of local women-led organizations and their meaningful participation in HPC design and planning as well as HCTs - particularly in Ethiopia, Iraq, Yemen, Myanmar, and Syria.

Funding shortfalls

Lack of funding for the response to and the mitigation and prevention of GBV remains of critical concern. The IASC continues to advocate for funding and scrutinize and remove the impediments to GBV response, including societal/cultural stigma, lack of survivor-centred approach, and limited meaningful engagement of women-led organizations and women affected by conflict in humanitarian design. However, funding for GBV has only reached above 20 per cent of the global requirements, severely limiting the capacity to save lives and meet the needs of GBV survivors in humanitarian contexts.

To follow through on the humanitarian system’s commitments to combat GBV and the chronic issue of underfunding, a High-Level Round Table led by the ERC with IASC Principals and donors was convened. This resulted in improved visibility and tracking of GBV funding, including through the new Financial Tracking Service (FTS) page, which provides comprehensive information on system-wide funding allocations for GBV programming. The FTS page presents the funding requirements for GBV mitigation, prevention and response, providing a comprehensive overview of the global sector requirements for all HRPs and appeals in the GHO. More features will be added to the page shortly which will make it easier to download data for enhanced analysis.

The Central Emergency Response Fund (CERF) has increased pooled funding for GBV response through its Underfunded Emergencies window and a CERF allocation to UNFPA and UN Women. CERF’s Underfunded Emergencies window allocation of $100 million for 10 countries earmarked $9.6 million for GBV priorities and included $30 million allocated to Yemen to exclusively address issues for women and girls, including public health. The total amount allocated by country operations to GBV-related programming increased from an earmarked $9.6 million to $21.7 million, including indirect GBV outcomes under the health sector. CERF funding of $25 million was allocated to UN Women and UNFPA to address GBV across 11 countries affected by humanitarian emergencies and to support 770,000 affected people. An estimated 40 per cent of that funding – $10 million – has been allocated to women-led organizations and women’s rights organizations in 2021-2022. Going forward, CERF has committed to ensuring 30 per cent of funding to local women’s organizations for projects related to GBV. 

CBPFs have achieved considerable results in gender equality and GBV. In 2020, the CBPFs allocated $863 million in total, all of which required the use of the IASC Gender with Age Marker (GAM) to ensure gender equality was a key consideration. Using the GAM, 66 per cent of funding aimed to contribute to gender equality. In 2020, 38 local women-led organizations were eligible to receive funding in 18 CBPFs (9 per cent of all partners). GBV was the main objective of 9 per cent of CERF-funded projects in 2020, with 62 per cent including a GBV component. CBPF is currently reviewing the global guidelines to better encourage and improve access for local women-led organizations to CBPFs and to promote the participation of women-led/women’s rights organizations in governance arrangements, including advisory boards and project review committees.


  1. Annual Humanitarian Programme Cycle Quality Scoring exercise undertaken by OCHA, UK FDCO, USAID, ECHO, UNICEF, WHO, IOM, UNFPA, and UNHCR.
  2. Analysis of Gender-Based Violence in 2021 Humanitarian Needs Overviews and Humanitarian Response Plans, GBV AOR, June 2021.