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This module provides practical guidance to institutions and individuals interested or involved in campaigning to end violence against women and girls (VAW), including, amongst others, women’s groups, human rights and other civil society and development organizations, government entities, and community groups. It draws from and builds on time-tested tools and literature, a growing body of evidence from research and a wide range of campaigns to end VAW.

The module is divided into 8 sections which describe the different, multi-faceted aspects of campaigning on VAW. The last section offers links to existing campaigns and relevant networks, as well as references for further information. Readers who wish to gain a quick overview should focus on this introduction and Guiding Principles, as well as the beginning of the sections on Campaign Planning and Campaign Strategy.

Essential knowledge on VAW: Readers who have little experience in work to end VAW are advised to start by visiting the Overview of Violence against Women and Girls in Programming Essentials.

Terminology: Throughout this module, the acronym VAW designates violence against women and girls. The United Nations Declaration on the Elimination of Violence Against Women (1993) defines VAW as any act of gender-based violence that results in, or is likely to result in, physical, sexual or psychological harm or suffering to women, including threats of such acts, coercion or arbitrary deprivation of liberty, whether occurring in public or in private life. “There are many forms of violence against women, including sexual, physical, or emotional abuse by an intimate partner; physical or sexual abuse by family members or others; sexual harassment and abuse by authority figures (such as teachers, police officers or employers); trafficking for forced labour or sex; and such traditional practices as forced or child marriages, dowry-related violence and honour killings, when women are murdered in the name of family honour. Systematic sexual abuse in conflict situations is another form of violence against women” (WHO, 2009. Promoting Gender Equality to Prevent Violence against Women.)