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Breaking the Silence on Sexual Violence

Breaking the Silence on Sexual Violence: strengthening NGO capacity to integrate sexual violence on the public agenda

Why this project:

Imagini pentru Breaking the sexual violence ACTEDOThe project “Breaking the Silence on Sexual Violence” emerged from the need to have a more structured space to discuss sexual violence and ways to combat it among 9 NGOs promoting gender equality and advocating for ending violence against women. The idea behind of the project is to break through the taboos surrounding sexual violence in order to encourage victims to seek adequate help and report the crimes.

A recent study of the Fundamental Rights Agency of the EU “ Violence against women: every day and in every place” shows that 6% of Romanian women have been at some point in their lives victims of sexual aggression.  Unfortunately only a small number of victims receive specialized assistance or report the crime. The difference between what authorities record and what the everyday experience of women when aggression and harassment is a routine event remains covered in silences, prejudice, shame and fear.  It is out of this need that this project steams from and which it aims to address.

 Main objectives:

  • Strenghtening the capacities of the NGO network to integrate a gender perspective on sexual violance in the public agenda
  • Enhancing dialogue with other partners and agreeing common priorities during 7 thematic meetings; the agreeded priorities will be translated in 10 advocacy instruments (5 position papers and 5 factsheets); enhancing knowledge of sexual violence through the development of an online resource center.
  • Consolidating advocacy capacities of the network by promoting a common message through 5 local events and a public seminar at national level on sexual violence and priorities.
  • Extending the network with 5 additional organizations which work with beneficieries at risk of sexual victimization.


  • A series of 7 thematic meetings with network members ( July 2014 – April 2015); the last meeting to be followed by a public seminar.
  • An online resource center – to include information on services, examples of good practice, current studies and research as well as the network’s own advocacy documents. The target audience of the online resource center are professionals working with victims or with persons at risk of sexual victimization, decision-makers, mass-media, relevant universities.
  • A series of 5 public local events in Iasi, Târgu-Mureș, Sibiu, Cluj and Bucharest  promoting a common message and a call to action developed by the network.

Calendar for thematic meetings:

Meeting 1.   Sexual Violence from a gender perspective: approaches and risk groups, Date:  24 July 2014, Bucharest

Meeting 2. Media Representations of Sexual Violence: issues and good practices, Date: 22nd August,  Bucharest

Meeting 3. Good Practices in Providing Services for Victims, Date: 17-18 September, Sibiu

Meeting 4. Sexual Violence Against Adults, Sexual Violence Against Minors, Date: 17th of October, Bucharest

Meeting 5.  Agreeing Priorities and a Common Actions, Date: 10th of November, Bucharest

Meeting 6. Sexual Harassment and Sexual Violence within Intimate Relationships, Date:  15th of Decembrie, Bucharest

Meeting 7. Drafting a Call to Action on Sexual Violence

Lessons learned: Breaking the Silence about Sexual Violence

Local Partners: Asociația Transcena, Institutul Est European pentru Sănătatea Reproducerii, Asociația Front, Centrul Parteneriat pentru Egalitate, Asociația E-Romnja, Societatea de Analize Feministe AnA, Centrul Filia, Asociația Artemis, collaborator: Sensiblu Foundation

International Partner: Stigamot Iceland. Breaking the Silence on Sexual Violence benefits from the experience of a foreign partner whose collaboration we deem key for the development of the project. The Iceland partner organization Stigamot has been offering specialized counseling for victims of sexual violence and it has been representing victim’s interests for the past 23 years in Reykjavik. Stigamot will take part in two thematic meetings to share its experience concerning services for victims and advocacy campaigns.

Duration: 15th of May 2014 – 15th of May 2015

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Funding: SEE 2009-2014 grants, in the NGO Fund Romania. The total value of the project is 43,409 Euros. The contents of this website section do not necessarily represent the official position of the SEE 2009-2014 grants. The responsibility for the correctness and coherence of the information presented lies wholly with the website initiator. For official information regarding the SEE and Norwegian grants, access www.eeagrants.org. Project financed through the SEE 2009-2014 grants, in the NGO Fund for Romania.