The Listen Up! Project Amplifying Voices of Women and Girls to Reduce Sexual Harassment and Sexual Exploitation and Abuse
The Listen Up! Project, is a Gift of the United States Government and funded by the Bureau of Population, Refugees, and Migration – US Department of State (BPRM) since September 2018, aims to amplify the voices and power of women and girls working or living in humanitarian settings, and catalyze institutional reform and interagency action to reduce sexual harassment and sexual exploitation and abuse in humanitarian settings. Feminist principles guide the Listen Up! Project, including through accountability to a core group of women’s rights organizations and networks representatives and experts who form the Project Advisory Group. The advisory group and the IRC project team meet periodically online and face-to-face for consultation on key project deliverables.
The Listen Up! Project Objectives:
The project works towards delivery of the following objectives:
- Build international solidarity with, and voice of, women and girls living and working in humanitarian contexts through use of the Listen Up! Barometer and Activists Platform.
- Share learning and guidance on transformation of organizational culture to promote gender equality and zero tolerance of sexual harassment and SEA with the wider humanitarian community.
- Share learning and guidance (informed by voices and feedback of women and girls), on women-led mechanisms to improve accountability to women and girls affected by SEA with the wider humanitarian community.
The Listen Up! Project Theory of Change and Mission Statement
The project works towards the theory of change that aims at having women and girls affected by crisis and women at work in emergencies pursue their potential, free from violence and inequality.
We believe that the humanitarian system needs to fundamentally transform if we are to truly prevent sexual exploitation, abuse and harassment of women and girls affected by crisis and women at work in emergencies.
We believe that through feminist analysis, feminist leadership, and feminist activism, we can spark transformational change that is sustainable beyond the lifecycle of one emergency or one project.
Ways of Working: We believe that to take a feminist approach to transforming the humanitarian system, we must:
First and always do no harm, centering women and girls’, particularly survivors’, needs and wishes;
Hold ourselves accountable, to each other and to the women and girls we work with and for, to contribute collectively to the change we seek;
Listen to women and girls, amplifying their voices by stepping up for them when they need support and stepping back to make space for them to speak for themselves;
Be transparent and open in our communications and decision-making, ensuring that decision-making does not fall into the patriarchy, hierarchy or bureaucracy that contributes to the failures of the system as it currently stands;
Acknowledge power differentials and work to shift power and resources to local women and girls’ organizations;
Take an intersectional approach, which centers on women and girls in all their diversity, creates more spaces that are accessible to women and girls, and widens spheres of influence;
We believe we have an obligation to advocate to end sexual exploitation, abuse and harassment wherever it occurs and hold everyone in our field, including donors, governments, international organizations, international non-government organizations, community-based organizations and ourselves to best practice and the highest standards. This will necessarily mean that women and girls are themselves powerful participants in humanitarian funding, strategies and policies.
We believe we are stronger as a collective, and that we can and should consistently learn from each other, capturing best practice from the feminist movement and other social change movements to improve and evolve our work.
We stand in solidarity with displaced women and girls and with women at work in emergencies. We are fueled by our commitment to end sexual exploitation, abuse and harassment against women and girls and the powerful work of our colleagues in this fight.