From 25 November until 10 December, the 16 Days of Activism against Gender-Based Violence annual international campaign is organized around the world to call for the prevention and elimination of violence against women and girls.
Gender-based violence (GBV) remains one of the most prevalent issues facing women and girls, and is defined as as “violence that is directed against a woman because she is a woman or that affects women disproportionately” and encompasses “physical, sexual and psychological violence, including threats and coercion.”
In Egypt, women’s rights activists have been tirelessly fighting to eliminate all forms of gender-based violence for a long time. While there still remains many setbacks, the efforts of activists culminated in a national strategy that recognizes the problem with the ‘2015-2020 National Strategy for Combating Violence Against Women (NSVAW)’ that was launched in June 2015.
Though domestic violence has yet not been criminalized, as in the case with rape, sexual harassment and female genital mutilation/cutting (FGM), there are still many organizations and legal centres that work to offer help for a lot of women.
Here are a list of places that offer legal advise, counseling, and psychological support.
1. ES2AL MO7AMEK ‘Ask Your Lawyer’ (www.mo7amek.com) 01122105150 – 01061496144 / 25242141
Through this website, women are provided with instant legal assistance. This website plays the role of the personal online lawyer for women in Egypt, which can receive inquiries through the hotline, website page, and or its own Facebook page.
Apart from the legal consultancies provided, the website also helps raise awareness about women’s rights that are secured by the law. This is done through providing simple awareness content, which helps promote women’s access to justice.
2. Egyptian Red Crescent Psychosocial Support Unit (PSSU) (www.egyptianrc.org) 02 23492106
The Egyptian Red Crescent Psychosocial Support Unit ( PSSU ) provides psychosocial support for vulnerable groups in the community, whether they are victims of disasters, family violence, refugees, gender-based violence, chronic patients or those with special needs. It aims to improve the psychosocial well-being and resilience of vulnerable groups to help them return back to their normal lives.
3. Cairo Foundation for Development and Law (CCD) 0121 000 9192
Cairo Foundation for Development and Law is an Egyptian and feminist-oriented organization, which works on improving the situation of Egyptian women, providing legal services and helps them obtain their unconditional rights to dignity, freedom, equality and social justice.
4.The Association for the Development and Enhancement of Women (0114 061 7926)
The Egyptian NGO works on providing a comprehensive package of programs that include education, micro-credit, legal services, community mobilization, and health promotion for women. They have a focus on women heads of household, aiming to help them economically, legally, and socially, in an effort to promote their participation in society at large.
They also empower women legally by obtaining legal documentation for them and familiarizing them with their legal status through supporting and assisting them with legal matters.
5. Centre for Egyptian Women’s Legal Asisstance (+2-02) 373 165 85/ 371 545 62)
The Center for Egyptian Women’s Legal Assistance (CEWLA) is a leading Egyptian women’s lawyers group, founded in 1995 to advance women’s rights through the law. They provide legal aid, mainly to impoverished women, and advocate against female genital mutilation (FGM), ‘honour crimes’, and discriminatory divorce laws.