“Safe Cities” project arrives to Cairo to make urban settings safer for women

22 November 2010

Cairo.- Women and girls are at higher risk of exposure to urban violence. As cities grow, stopping threats to these vulnerable groups must be central to municipal development and safety. UNIFEM (part of UN Women) as a leading agency launched this November the joint -programme called “Greater Cairo Region: Safe Cities free of violence against women and girls” at Cairo University. Mr. James W. Rawley, UN Resident Coordinator, and professor Hossam Kamel, the Cairo University President, supported the launch ceremony of the programme, which will test new strategies to stop epidemic rates of violence against women and girls in urban areas.

UNFPA Country Office interventions in the “Safe Cities” Program will be focused in three main areas:
-Enhancing the capacity of local government to respond to and prevent violence against women and girls in public and private spaces
-Conducting awareness activities in coordination with the Islamic International Center, Al Azhar University and the National Council for Human rights targeting religious leaders, Doaa and community members to raise awareness on the perception of Islam regarding human rights, women’s rights, reproductive rights, gender and GBV.
-Improving infrastructure that incorporates practical measures to address women’s and girls safety, such as enhancing existing women’s shelters and establishing new ones in needed areas.
The overall goal of the project in Egypt is to improve the quality of life of Egyptian women through the creation of safe cities and communities that are free of violence against them. The project will be implemented in the Greater Cairo Region (GCR) -an agglomeration that comprises Cairo Governorate and the urban areas of Giza and Qalyobiya, October and Helwan Governorates-.
UNIFEM in collaboration with other UN agencies presented its innovative programme in five cities around the world at the same time: Cairo (Egypt), Quito (Ecuador), New Delhi (India), Port Moresby (Papua New Guinea) and Kigali (Rwanda).