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In times of displacement, women and girls face an increased risk of discrimination and gender-based violence.

UNHCR works to prevent this by ensuring fair aid distribution, access to safe shelters and facilities, and helping displaced and stateless women overcome barriers to education and employment.
Syria. World Refugee Day event in Damascus
In some societies, women and girls face discrimination and violence every day simply because of their gender. An ordinary task like collecting water or going to the toilet can put them at risk of rape or abuse.

In times of displacement, this problem escalates. Women and girls make up around 50 per cent of any refugee, internally displaced or stateless population, and those who are unaccompanied, pregnant, heads of households, disabled or elderly are especially vulnerable.

At UNHCR, we work hard to ease their struggle, ensuring safe shelters offering privacy, construction or maintenance assistance, fair food distribution systems, and separate sanitation facilities. We also manage programmes that help women to improve their leadership skills, overcome barriers to education, and access opportunities.

Our work builds upon women’s own resilience and strength and helps them improve their lives, as well as those of their children, families and communities, every single day.

Who we work with

UNHCR is just one of many organizations working around the world to help displaced and stateless women and girls.

To strengthen the inclusion of gender equality at the institutional and global levels, UNHCR works with an array of partners and participates in various fora, including the IASC Gender Reference Groupthe GenCap Advisory Group, and the Inter-Agency Network on Gender and Women’s Empowerment (IANGWE)

Forcibly displaced women are often the first responders in conflict or crisis settings but are significantly underrepresented in peacebuilding and formal peace processes. UNHCR is committed to the Women, Peace and Security agenda and works to dismantle barriers to the equal and meaningful participation of forcibly displaced and stateless women and girls, including through partnerships, inter-agency processes as well as board memberships in the Compact on Women, Peace and Security and Humanitarian Action and the Women's Peace and Humanitarian Fund.

Further resources
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International gender champions