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No Means No Worldwide

  • LocationUganda
  • SectorGender
  • Type of investmentGrant

A $225,000 grant to No Means No Worldwide 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. The curriculum aims to reduce violence against women and girls, and empower girls to stand up for their rights. (Photo by Nadja Wohlleben, Photojournalist and Documentary Photographer)

No Means No Worldwide

The development problem.

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, as 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 called the No Means No curriculum, which it delivers to boys and girls 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. A video of the programme has been featured on BBC and a shorter Facebook video has hit 42 million views. The curriculum has so far been delivered to approximately 300,000 girls and boys in Kenya, Uganda, and Malawi.

GIF's investment.

GIF’s investment is towards testing NMNW’s ability to expand No Means No through partnerships. So far NMNW has achieved success in implementing the program on it’s own. To create far reaching impact, NMNW will need to partner with other organisations and provide them tools to effectively deliver the No Means No program to millions of girls and boys. gIF funds will be used for partners’ trainings, staffing of NMNW towards servicing partnerships effectively, building organisational support systems and creation of framework for process monitoring of implementation through partners.

Investment objective(s).

Execute strategic scaling initiatives including expanding to three new geographies and launching new proactive partnerships; developing the requisite organisational capacity, structure and systems to support growth and sustainability; applying lessons learned to improve its partnership model and the No Means No system; and developing a stakeholder network to share evidence and best practices.

Why we invested

  • This is a low-cost, replicable approach with potentially transformative impact. This model is applicable across geographies and contexts solving a problem disproportionately affecting girls and women living under $5 a day.
  • A set of good quality partners and demand from strong organisations (the BRAC ELA programme alone operates in 6 high-prevalence countries).
  • Gender-based violence interventions are mostly funded by human-rights funders. GIF could be additional by helping the team think about demonstrable social impact at scale.
  • Tackles a very important and difficult to address issue affecting girl’s and women’s agency, helping GIF learn about this space and signal a quick win under the Gender Sub-Fund.
  • Funding a train-the-trainer model and providing core funding to the organisation is relatively new for GIF. This investment could expand our knowledge in the approach of social franchising, a very promising approach to scale up innovations which involve change of behavioural and social norms and demand deeper human engagement.

Click here to read No Means No Worldwide’s Impact Brief.

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