Component 2 of the What Works programme is now well into its implementation phase, with efforts currently focused on formative work for two of the project’s largest research studies: an assessment of a comprehensive case management model using a task sharing approach with refugee community workers in Dadaab Kenya; and a population-based mixed methods prevalence study in South Sudan.

In June, research partners London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine (LSHTM) and the African Population Health and Research Center (APHRC) conducted formative research in Dadaab in northern Kenya, working closely with International Rescue Committee (IRC) and CARE programme teams in Hagadera and Dagahaley refugee camps.

The formative work will use qualitative and quantitative approaches to understand the experiences of refugee community workers and national staff delivering comprehensive case management services. The findings from the formative research will inform the development of a cohort survey where researchers will explore whether a comprehensive case management approach using task sharing to deliver gender-based violence response services is an acceptable, feasible and effective approach to improving the safety, health and well-being of GBV survivors. The researchers will be based with IRC and CARE staff in Dadaab, with the cohort survey due to take place in early 2016.

In South Sudan in July, the Global Women’s Institute (GWI) at the George Washington University will conduct formative research in urban, rural and Protection of Civilian (PoC) camp settings in Central Equatoria and Lakes states of South Sudan. They will lead a team of experts from the GWI, IRC, CARE and Forcier Consulting to conduct participatory research with a range of stakeholders, from government, NGO and humanitarian sectors, and communities in the selected research sites. Through the formative research the GWI plan to gain a richer understanding of the context of violence against women and girls and the conflict in South Sudan, which will inform the design of the population-based survey due to take place later in 2015.

In addition to formative research, Component 2 will soon be publishing a research report and policy brief on our retrospective study on the international response to Typhoon Haiyan in the Philippines – looking at how the specific needs of women and girls were taken in to account in immediate aftermath of the disaster. It is hoped that findings from the study can feed in to discussions around implementation of the new Inter-Agency Standing Committee’s Guidelines for Integrating Gender-based Violence Interventions in Humanitarian Action. The Consortium will also publish an evidence brief summarising recent systematic reviews on gender-based violence in conflict and humanitarian settings, which will form the basis of a searchable online database being developed by the GWI, to guide effective and evidence-based prevention and response to violence against women and girls.

Preparatory work is also underway for two further studies within the Component 2 portfolio of research: a study that will systematically assess and synthesise existing evidence of the impacts of state building and peace building related to violence against women and girls in four countries; and an evaluation of the impact of cash programming on women’s protection, agency and empowerment in the immediate onset of a humanitarian emergency. For the cash study, IRB approval has recently been obtained and the research team is now developing criteria for site selection of potential emergencies.


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