The experience of civil society organizations from Romania and the Republic of Moldova in the context of the COVID-19 pandemic: challenges and good practices

UN Women facilitated an informative video session to exchange good practices among organizations active in the field of eliminating gender-based and domestic violence, members of the National Coalition ‘Life Without Domestic Violence’ and relevant organizations from Romania, such as the Association for Liberty and Equality of Gender (A.L.E.G)., and ”Pas Alternativ” Association (Alternative Step), which provide services for women and girls affected by violence.

Date: Wednesday, May 6, 2020

Informative video session organized under the collaboration agreement with A.L.E.G, facilitated by UN Women and financed by Sweden. Photo Credits: UN Women

The participants shared information on local support systems for domestic violence, operating during the pandemic, as well as the local response to COVID-19 and impact of this pandemic on women.

Anna Lyberg, Ambassador of Sweden to Moldova. Photo Credits: UN Women

”In the context of general tendency of increase in domestic violence during the lockdowns due to the COVID-19 pandemic, we understand the importance of supporting national civil society organizations (CSOs) that are providing direct services to survivors of violence and combating the phenomenon of gender-based violence. Tailored coaching programmes, share of experience with other organizations, including international ones, could bring added value to their activity,” stated the Ambassador of Sweden to the Republic of Moldova, Anna Lyberg.

Examples of current practices from organizations in the field of preventing and combating gender-based violence in Romania, in response to the new coronavirus.

Positive practices of organizations in the field of preventing and combating gender-based violence in the Republic of Moldova, in response to the new coronavirus.

According to the civil society organizations, in the first weeks of March, in Moldova, the number of calls to the national hotline to report cases of domestic violence has decreased over the course of the last two weeks, compared to the previous periods, because the current circumstances make reporting even harder. Many women and girls have limited access to their phones since they are under lockdown with their abusers.

“This informative session is a wonderful opportunity to exchange practices and experiences with our colleagues from Romania. It will help us take more effective and bold measures to support women affected by COVID-19, especially those facing gender-based violence. By strengthening and consolidating our efforts, affected women will be able to cope with the impact of this pandemic,” said Peterson Magoola, Representative a.i for UN Women Moldova.

According to the National Bureau of Statistics, in the Republic of Moldova, about 64 per cent of women have suffered a form of violence from their husband or intimate partner at least once in their life. During the quarantine period recommended for combating COVID-19, there is a high risk that the number of violence cases may increase. In some countries practicing social isolation measures, the reported cases of domestic violence have recently tripled.

The informative video session was organized under the collaboration agreement with A.L.E.G, facilitated by UN Women and financed by Sweden.