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Ensure adequate funding for the NGO sector

Last edited: March 08, 2019

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Coordinated responses cannot achieve their goals without the engagement of NGOs that are experts in violence against women and, unlike State authorities, part of their communities.  As a result, the NGO sector is the key and core resource in any coordinated response. However it is also often the most fragile component because NGOs are often dependent on short-term funding models (Coy et al., 2009).  The Australian National Council’s Plan to Reduce Violence against Women and their Children (2011) acknowledges that where NGOs compete with each other for scarce resources, collaborative efforts can be compromised through suspicion and mistrust.  Lack of financial security can also reduce stability and continuity and reduce their ability to participate fully.

To counteract this effect, one of the key tasks for a coordinated response is to develop a policy and strategy on the sustainability of the NGO sector.  This strategy should include clear statements of intent and memoranda of understanding on securing resources from local, national and international funding streams for its NGOs. 

Where the NGO sector is weak and/or currently focuses only on some forms of violence against women, the strategy must also include planning to extend the sector to ensure a strong and comprehensive response.  International commitments, such as General Recommendation 19 of the Convention Against All Forms of Discrimination , and the Beijing Platform for Action, which require States to provide adequate protection and support services across all forms of violence against women, can be useful to lobby for greater action and accountability.

Tools and resources

The Women’s Resource Centre provides information and online guides about sustainable funding options to assist women’s organisations in becoming more resilient financially.