Strengthening Access to Multi-sectoral Public Services for GBV Survivors in Bangladesh

(November 2017-December 2021)


Gender based violence (GBV) manifests in an ever growing number of ways, such as; early marriage, rape, trafficking, domestic violence, acid attack, dowry repayment related violence etc. In Bangladesh the prevalence of GBV is extremely high, according to the latest national Violence against Women (VAW) Survey conducted by the Bangladesh Bureau of Statistics in 2015, approximately 73 percent of ever-married women in Bangladesh have experienced some form of partner violence in their lifetime, and more than half (54.7 percent) have experienced violence in the last 12 months prior to the survey. Amongst non-married women, 35 percent reported non-partner physical violence and 3 percent were exposed to sexual violence. Such high prevalence rates are not only detrimental to women and girls, especially as survivors face long term health and psychosocial implications, but also it is a social and development concern for Bangladesh.

‘ASTHA: Strengthening access to multi-sectoral public services for GBV survivors in Bangladesh’ project recognizes the commendable efforts of GoB, CSOs and other agencies to tackle GBV, and aims to strengthen the access of their services at local and national level to ensure an environment of no tolerance for GBV. ASTHA works to develop institutional and individual capacities, building up coordination among the stakeholders and improving levels of knowledge and awareness about GBV. The first phase of ASTHA will take place in four project districts with particularly high GBV rates- Jamalpur, Patuakhali, Bogura, and Cox’s Bazar- with intent to replicate nationally. ASTHA will be administered in project districts under coordination from MoWCA and in collaboration with health, protection, legal, and psychosocial services. ASTHA is implemented by Ain o Salish Kendra (ASK) at project districts with the support from PNGOs- Gana Unnayan Kendra (GUK), Shushilan, YPSA and Sabalamby Unnayan Samity (SUS), technical support from United Nations population fund (UNFPA) and funding from the Embassy of the Kingdom of the Netherlands (EKN).


Strengthened GoB and CSO efforts to reduce Gender based violence and increased utilization of multi-sectoral response services in four districts of Bangladesh for nation-wide replication to minimize gaps in capacity and coordination, as well as harmful social and gender norms, impeding the realization of an environment of no-tolerance to GBV in Bangladesh.

Project Participants

Vulnerable women and girls who do not have access to multi-sectoral services, due to circumstances out of their control, and who are at risk or survivor of gender based violence and harmful practices, community people, men and boys, third gender people.


  1. Increased access to multi-sectoral public response services for survivors of GBV
  2. Increased positive attitude amongst community members against harmful gender norms and behaviours that perpetuate violence.

Project Strategies

  • Survivor centric approach
  • Service Delivery
  • Improved coordination
  • Capacity development
  • Policy advocacy
  • Community engagement and awareness raising

Working Areas

  • Bogura: Upazila – Bogura Sadar, No. of Union – 11; Upazila – Nandigram, No. of Union – 5; Upazila – Sonatala, No. of Union – 7
  • Cox’s Bazar: Upazila – Ramu, No. of Union – 11; Upazila – Teknaf, No. of Union – 6; Upazila – Ukhia, No. of Union – 5
  • Jamalpur: Upazila – Dewangonj, No. of Union – 8; Upazila – Sarishabari, No. of Union – 8; Upazila – Islampur, No. of Union – 12, No. of pouroshova – 3
  • Potuakhali: Upazila – Galachipa, No. of Union – 10; Upazila – Kalapara, No. of Union – 10; Upazila – Mirzaganj, No. of Union – 6