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Across the Pacific, crisis centres respond to COVID-19 amid natural disasters June 11,2020   |  Source: reliefweb

Gender-based violence crisis centres from six countries in the Pacific have faced not only the COVID-19 crisis, but also in some countries, the dual impact of a tropical cyclone. UN Women’s Ending Violence Against Women and Girls programme works in close collaboration with government, civil society organisations, communities and other partners to promote gender equality, prevent violence against women and girls, and increase access to quality response services for survivors, especially during emergencies.

As COVID-19 made headlines back in January, crisis centres in the Pacific started preparing themselves for its possible implications, should it reach their shores. Having experienced multiple natural disasters and emergencies over the years, they knew that the rates and severity of domestic violence escalate during crises, often coupled with disruptions to critical support services.

For the six crisis centres in Fiji, Tonga, Vanuatu, Solomon Islands, Kiribati and Samoa, the safety of survivors and staff was paramount, and all centres surged into preparedness and response mode. As early as January, the Fiji Women’s Crisis Centre (FWCC) and the Women and Children’s Crisis Centre (WCCC) in Tonga cancelled all staff travel and followed the news closely, strategizing and



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