Type of Investment


Project Stage
Length of Investment


Investment Overview

NMNW’s evidence-based sexual violence prevention model, No Means No, is delivered to girls and boys aged 10 to 20 in schools and clubs. The curricula deliver empowerment self-defence skills, reshape harmful beliefs around gender, and teach bystander intervention skills.


The Development Challenge

It is estimated that 35% of women worldwide have experienced physical and/or sexual intimate partner violence or sexual violence by a non-partner at some point in their lives. In Africa, this number is estimated to be even higher. Women who have been physically or sexually abused by their partners are more than twice as likely to have an abortion, almost twice as likely to experience depression, and in some regions, 1.5 times more likely to acquire HIV, compared to women who have not experienced partner violence. Moreover, it is estimated that 246 million girls and boys experience school related violence every year.


The Innovation

No Means No Worldwide has developed a short programme, the No Means No curriculum, which it delivers to girls and boys between ages 10-20 in schools and clubs. It is a system of knowledge and strategies that aims to end the cycle of violence by engaging boys to respect and support women and girls, and empowering girls to stand up for their rights. The training includes explanation of the assault continuum, verbal and basic physical strategies for self-defence, and six hours of role playing. The No Means No violence prevention approach is backed by extensive, rigorous published research from Kenya and Malawi showing, among other things, that incidence of sexual violence decreased by an average of 47% amongst programme participants. A video of the programme on Facebook went viral with 48 million views and a more recent video showcases their work in South Africa.


Our Investment

GIF’s initial USD 225K pilot investment in 2028 supported NMNW to pilot their partnerships approach to scaling, and develop and generate actionable learning for future scale-up. Until then, NMNW had achieved success in implementing the programme on its own. However, to make even more of an impact, NMNW intended to partner with other organisations and provide them with the tools to effectively deliver their programme.

GIF’s USD 1.9 million follow-on investment built on the success of the pilot and scaled No Means No exponentially through partnerships.


Progress to date

NMNW has increased the number of graduates from No Means No from 25,919 in 20219 to over 297,391 as of September 2023 in 2023. NMNW now sports over 80 active implementing partners across eleven countries. To deliver this extraordinary growth, NMNW has built up its own organisational capacity as well as shifted how it delivers the curriculum via partners. They have now trained over 200 active master trainers and trainers of instructors across organisations, who in turn helped increased the number of active and certified instructors from 145 in 2019, to 1,281 in 2021. NMNW have also launched a South Africa Innovation Hub, where the team directly deliver programming to test out innovative adaptations and measure impact of the evolving model. This included launching another ongoing rigorous evaluation of their impact on adolescents over time in South Africa. Finally, with a large set of different partners delivering No Means No, NMNW has stepped up into a thought leadership and convening role maintaining a vibrant learning network, where partners exchange best practices, troubleshoot challenges and together drive effectiveness of the programme further.


No Means No Worldwide in numbers


Adolescents reached annually


Average decrease in sexual violence amongst participants


Innovating for Gender Equality

A $1.9M Test & Transition grant to No Means No Worldwide following a successful Pilot grant provided in 2018. No Means No Worldwide will use this funding to support the expansion of its successful No Means No curriculum, which is taught to both girls and boys aged 10-20 years in schools and clubs, and refine its partnership model to achieve scale. The curriculum aims to reduce violence against women and girls, and empower girls to stand up for their rights.