Today, the Government of Ethiopia and UNICEF, inaugurated a one-stop centre (OSC) that provides comprehensive medical, legal, and psychosocial services to victims of gender-based violence (GBV) in a safe environment.
The ceremony was attended by H.E Dr. Ergogie Tesfaye, Minister for the Ministry of Women and Social Affairs of the Federal Democratic Republic of Ethiopia, Gianfranco Rotigliano, UNICEF Representative in Ethiopia, and representatives from the Amhara regional state.
“Women and children have suffered from an increase in gender-based violence due to the conflict,” said H.E. Dr. Ergogie Tesfaye. “This has a life-long impact on their physical, sexual and psycho-social well-being. This one-stop centre that we are inaugurating today gives access to a holistic service to survivors to recover from such trauma and reduces the incidences of GBV in the future.”
The centre provides critical medical services including the clinical management of rape, abortion care, emergency contraceptive and treatment for diseases like HIV and sexually transmitted infections and hepatitis B. It also provides mental health and psychosocial services as well as legal aid to victims. In addition, it provides referral services including shelter and livelihood support in collaboration with partners.
“The establishment of the one-stop centre is a critical step towards scaling up prevention and response services for children who are victims of GBV,” said Gianfranco Rotigliano, UNICEF Representative in Ethiopia. “UNICEF is committed to addressing GBV through a comprehensive approach that prioritizes access to services by working closely with the Government and other partners.”
A wide community awareness campaign is also underway so that victims of gender-based violence will not be afraid to seek the services provided at the centre due to stigma.
In the last two months, the case flow has increased due to the construction of the new centre with the full-service provision. There is also a plan to establish more one-stop centres in Amhara region including Debark and Sekota.
This one-stop centre is funded by FCDO and USAID and UNICEF and partners are grateful for this support.
Distributed by APO Group on behalf of United Nations Children’s Fund (UNICEF).