Violence against women and girls (VAWG) is widespread, systemic and culturally entrenched both globally and in Ethiopia. Violence against women consists of “any act of gender-based violence that results in, or is likely to result in, physical, sexual or psychological harm or suffering to women, including threats of such acts, coercion or arbitrary deprivations of liberty, whether occurring in public or in private life.” Gender-based violence is violence that is directed against women and girls on the bases of her gender or which affects women disproportionately and takes various forms. In addition to physical, emotional and sexual violence, violence against women and girls includes different types of harm and abuse such as; sexual harassment, female genital mutilation, early marriage, abduction, abuse resulting from allegations of sorcery and witchcraft, so-called honor killings of women and girls, trafficking of women and girls, female infanticide and other harmful practices. Intimate partner violence and non-partner sexual violence are among the most pervasive and insidious forms of violence against women and girls.

VAWG has detrimental and long-lasting consequences to the well-being, health and safety of women and girls, along with economic consequences, effects on educational outcomes, and impact on the productivity and development of women, societies and countries. While extensive commitment to respond to and prevent violence against women and girls has occurred at a global level over the last decades, many women and girls have little or no access to the support and services that can protect them, assist in keeping them safe, and address the short and long-term consequences of experiencing violence. In addition, the long-term effects of VAWG affects the life choices of women, their educational attainments and performance, self-confidence and their actions for personal and societal development. Many women want to escape the violence and search refuge and safety because their homes or communities are unsafe. They seek safety and peace by going to safe spaces such as shelters. In these spaces, women and their children who have fallen victim to violence find refuge, compassion, resources, and assistance. Women can make decisions about their own lives and heal and be safe from violence.

Shelters provide secure accommodation where women and girls who are at risk of or have been subjected to violence obtain comprehensive services required for their rehabilitation, empowerment and reintegration. Research and practice suggest that the way services are provided has a significant impact on their effectiveness. Shelters are institutions that provide essential aspects of protection, services and resources such as medical support, legal support, psycho social counseling, vocational skill trainings, life skill training and other services which enable women who have experienced abuse and their children to recover from the violence, to rebuild self – esteem and take steps to regain a self -determined and independent life.

Key to maintaining women and girls’ safety is an understanding of the gendered nature of violence against women and girls, its causes and consequences, and providing services within a culture of women’s empowerment. This includes ensuring that services are women-focused, child-friendly, are non-blaming, and support women and children to consider the range of choices available to them and support their decisions.

According to the 2016 National Assessment on women’s shelters in Ethiopia, the policy and legal frameworks for addressing violence against women are in place. This was a positive step in the provision of rehabilitation and reintegration services for survivors of violence. The assessment identified the remarkable contribution of the existing shelters that provided lifesaving services to thousands of survivors of violence in the country. However, it also revealed gaps in terms of access to and quality of comprehensive services for women and girl survivors of violence. One of the major challenges identified was lack of standard operating procedure which benchmark the standard on women’s shelters quality services for survivors of VAWG.

This reveals the need to put in place a national standard operating procedure (SOP) for existing shelters as well as shelter that will be opened to provide services to women and girls survivors of violence. The development of the national SOP will enable shelters to agree upon the needs that women and girls’ survivors of violence have and accordingly provide similar services, provide contextual inputs in the national SOP that is developed in consideration of their current situation on the ground. The national SOP will also provide the government with a standard to measure the service quality of shelters against and give a reference point to define and ensure that services to survivors are up to standard. The SOP will also be a reference point by which supporting agencies and partners will identify gaps and tailor their supports towards as well as for new shelters to understand requirements as they start engaging in service provision to survivors of violence.


Duties and Responsibilities

  • Review and analyze the Global essential services package to understand the framework, principles, standards and minimum requirements for essential service provision for women and girls’ survivors of violence.
  • Work closely with international consultant to undertake desk review of existing international instruments and national policy frameworks, laws and directives that regulate shelter services to align with the national framework including the revised CSO law.
  • Review and assess exising Standard Operating Procedures, shelter guidelines and other guiding doucments that have been produced and are being used by existing safehouses in the country
  • Refer other standard operating procedures and other relevant documents used by similar women shelter service providers throughout the world.
  • Conduct a mini assessment of sample shelters to understand the situation, available skill and abilities in which shelters are operating and gather contextual information beyond the individual SOPs and Shelter guidelines on document. 
  • Propose a draft Standard Operating Procedures aligned to the global program on essential services package, the international and national policy framework and tailored to fit the national context
  • Work closely with the international consultant to develop a monitoring checklist the implementation process consideration specific for the social services sector


  • Demonstrates integrity by modelling the UN’s values and ethical standards
  • Promotes the vision, mission, and strategic goals of UN Women;
  • Displays cultural, gender, religion, race, nationality and age sensitivity and adaptability
  • Treats all people fairly without favouritism;
  • Fulfils all obligations to gender sensitivity and zero tolerance for sexual harassment.

Required Skills and Experience


  • University post-graduate level in gender, development studies, research or relevant related field.


  • At least 10 years of experience in working with gender/social programme design, operational planning, and management.
  • Familiar with service provisions for women and girls who are survivors of violence.
  • Demonstrated experience in SOP development experience is an asset.
  • Good interpersonal skills and capacity to liaise with parties concerned.


  • Excellent verbal and written English skill.
  • Ability to work with diverse group of partners, under strict timelines.


    Familiarity with the Ethiopia gender context is a prerequisite


Interested applicants must submit the following document/information (in PDF format) to demonstrate their qualifications

Technical component:

  • Letter of interest explaining why they are the most suitable for the work
  • Technical proposal of no more than 3 pages outlining the applicants understanding of the issue to be addressed in the development of the SOP and proposed methodology for the assignment, including stakeholders to be met.
  • Signed Curriculum vitae with contact details of 03 clients for whom you have rendered preferably similar services

Financial proposal (with your signature)

  • The financial proposal shall specify a total lump sum amount in US Dollar including consultancy fees and all associated costs i.e. airfares, travel cost, meal, accommodation, tax, insurance etc. Travel to Safe houses in various cities of the regional states is expected.
  • Please note that the cost of preparing a proposal and of negotiating a contract, including any related travel, is not reimbursable as a direct cost of the assignment.
  • If quoted in other currency, prices shall be converted to US Dollar at UN Exchange Rate at the submission deadline.

Complete applications should be sent to Winta Ermias ( Only applications with all items mentioned above will be considered.