Title: National GBV Officer
Hiring Office: Sub-regional Office for the Caribbean (SROC)
Purpose of consultancy:
The socio-economic emergency in Venezuela has led to the outflow of an estimated 3.4 million Venezuelans into neighboring countries and beyond. According to UNHCR, the number of arrivals in neighboring states had steadily
increased to 5,000 a day as of early 20182. A significant number remain in an irregular situation which makes them vulnerable to exploitation, extortion, exactions, violence, trafficking, sexual abuse, recruitment, and discrimination
and xenophobia, especially in insecure border areas where criminal and armed groups operate.
The increase in mixed flow migration from Venezuela has surpassed the capacity of public institutions to respond in multiple countries. The need for predictable legal status, documentation, shelter, access to health care and other basic and protection services is acute and necessary. Receiving communities are themselves coming under increasing strain, which can undermine peaceful coexistence and feed manifestations of discrimination and xenophobia.
The search for economic options, partial or complete family separation, changes in conditions and roles, barriers in social assistance and exposure to higher risks of sexual violence and other forms of gender based violence,
including violence perpetrated by armed groups and traffickers, have created a situation of special need and vulnerability for women and girls. These needs require a protection response, with a gender focus, from the regional, national
and local level.
Estimates suggest that 36,600 Venezuelans and Guyanese returning from Venezuela have settled in Guyana and require humanitarian assistance (food and shelter), community-based support and protection. In addition, there are individuals who cross the border from Venezuela into Guyana on a temporary basis to seek medical care, purchase food and other supplies (pendular movement), as well as an unknown number of Venezuelans entering Guyana to work periodically in mining and other industries. Guyana possesses limited capacity to absorb a large influx of Venezuelans and Guyanese returnees and to provide adequate services and assistance, including GBV services. The Department of Immigration under the Ministry of Citizenship is registering and processing arrivals at official and informal land crossing or ports of entry points.
However, their capacity to respond to the influx of Venezuelans and Guyanese returnees is challenged by lack of resources.
An inter-agency assessment mission took place from 25 to 29 March 2019. Focus group discussions and key informant interviews were conducted with Venezuelan women and men living in Georgetown, region 1 and region 7.
Serious protection risks and lack of services were identified. Many of the women reported having been exposed to GBV, discrimination and xenophobia. Due to a lack of trust in the police, fear to be detained and a prevalent “machismo”
culture in the country, these incidents tend to go unreported. Lack of accurate information on services available and the procedures to regularize their migration status in Guyana was highlighted. From the assessments, it was
concluded that the existing capacity to respond and prevent GBV in Guyana is very limited and therefore there is an urgent need to strengthen such capacity.
Scope of work: (Description of services, activities, or outputs)
The role of the GBV Officer will be to support UNFPA in scaling up the response to the needs of refugees and migrants from Venezuela in Guyana. S/he will be supervised by the Liaison Officer for Guyana. Working closely with the GBViE
Specialist, the GBV Officer will work to ensure a robust planning and implementation of the UNFPA GBV response in Guyana and a well-functioning GBV coordination mechanism that promotes the highest standards of GBV prevention and response, in line with global standards and the GBV Area of Responsibility. The GBV Officer will work directly with GBV survivors and those who are most-at-risk and must always uphold UNFPAs values including utilizing a survivor centered approach.
The contract with UNFPA may be extended if funds are available.