The GBV Prevention Network

We are a vibrant network of activists and organizations working to prevent violence against women (VAW), united in our mission to uphold equality in our homes and communities.

The Network is over 500 members strong, working in 18 different countries in the Horn, East and Southern Africa to build a just and violence-free world for women. We are dedicated organizations, individuals, academics, and activists. We come from rural and urban areas, community-based organizations, academic institutions and more. We are both women and men from all walks of life. We are people who believe that violence is an injustice and that we have the power and responsibility to prevent it!

The GBV Prevention Network works to increase momentum for VAW prevention by strengthening analysis, building connections and taking action to prevent VAW.

Network Objectives

  1. Enhance member organizations’ rights-based analysis of VAW.
  2. Foster increased solidarity between and among members.
  3. Increase activism and joint actions amongst members.


In our work, we use the term violence against women (VAW) instead of gender-based violence (GBV) even though GBV is in our name! We do this because:

  • We believe that violence against both women and men is unacceptable. We also recognize that women and girls are disproportionately affected by violence based on the lower status that society ascribes to them. The use of VAW allows us to stay focused and committed to addressing this most pressing issue.
  • The term gender-based violence (GBV) includes one of the most overused and misunderstood words: gender. Gender carries important meaning and historically was used to highlight the imbalance of power between women and men. Unfortunately, in practice, this analysis of power has been largely lost in our region. Many activists, officials and other stakeholders now understand gender to mean “men and women” and thereby the term GBV to mean “violence against men and women.”
  • The term gender-based violence/GBV is very challenging to translate in most local languages in our region. Awkward, complicated and long translations create unnecessary barriers to understanding, interest and involvement in the issue. By using the terminology of ‘violence against women’ the Network can be more certain that others will more immediately and easily understand our mission and work.


Watch a short video about our Network here.