Strategies in protecting women and girls during COVID-19


In the wake of the Coronavirus pandemic, the Government of Kenya enforced lockdowns and movement restrictions to curb the spread of the virus and keep people healthy. As essential as these restrictions were, they have proven to be catastrophic to the lives of women and girls in their diversities. As health, security and financial worries caused by the pandemic intensifies, so are the number of women and girls who are increasingly facing gender based violence at home with no access to resources or people that could help them.

Against this backdrop, the Center for Rights Education and Awareness adapted its programs and interventions in the community to to provide rapid and targeted responses to prevent and to violence against women and girls during the pandemic.


Our Strategies and Response

  • 1. Ending all forms of violence against women and girls
  • 2. Elimination of economic and social-cultural discrimination
  • 3. Promoting effective participation of women and girls
  • 4. Ensuring universal access to Sexual Reproductive Health Rights.
1. Ending all forms of violence against women and girls

In an effort to provide comprehensive services to women and girls at risk or facing violence during the Covid-19 pandemic, CREAW focuses on the prevention of violence in private and public spaces as well as access to essential services. These include health, justice, police as well as supporting national and county level COVID-19 emergency response coordination units to prioritize gender based violence response:

  • Providing support to safe shelters to provide accommodation to survivors of gender based violence.
  • Psycho-social support to survivors of GBV.
  • CREAW’s toll-free line 0800-720-186 provides tele-counselling, legal aid and referral to other GBV service providers.
  • Provision of free legal aid mediation services to survivors of GBV.
  • Awareness raising on GBV in community spaces, radios and social media platforms.
  • Suluhisho Mobile App that provides real-time support to survivors of gender based violence.
  • Supporting women groups/gender activists to provide referral support to survivors of GBV at the community level.
2. Elimination of economic and social-cultural discrimination

Lockdowns and movement restrictions during the pandemic has necessitated closure of businesses and loss of jobs majorly affecting women and girls who are also the breadwinners thus increasing their vulnerability to intimate partner violence, rape and other forms of GBV. CREAW’s livelihood responses target survivors and women and girls living in rural and informal settlements.

  • Provision of cash transfers to vulnerable women and girls among them survivors of gender based violence to cushion them from the adverse economic downturn during the pandemic.
  • Resilient fund to survivors of gender based violence to rebuild their lives.
  • Training of women on entrepreneurship skills to rebuild their livelihoods and resilience beyond the pandemic.
3. Promoting effective participation of women and girls

Across the counties we are working with women and women-led groups and community based organizations in the frontlines on matters women’s rights. Among strategies we are using in our engagements includes:

  • Sub-grants to women groups and women-led community based organizations in the frontlines of response to GBV and advancing women’s rights including political, socio-cultural rights.
  • Supporting women and gender activists at the community level to mobilize the community and demand accountability for GBV service provision at the county level.
  • Strengthening the institutional capacities and activities of county, regional and national women’s rights organizations seeking to empower women and girls advance the protection of women’s and girls’ rights and achieve gender equality.
4. Ensuring universal access to Sexual Reproductive Health Rights.
  • Provision of menstrual products and sanitation kits to women and girls in informal and rural areas and safe shelters across the counties.
  • Dissemination of information among women and girls to help them maintain proper hygiene during their menses as well as root out menstruation stigma and period poverty in the communities.