The availability and quality of, as well as access to, specialized protection services need to be increased. People with specific needs include survivors of gender-based violence (GBV), children at-risk, people at risk of statelessness, indigenous people, LGBTI (lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, intersex) people, displaced persons, people living with HIV, elderly people and people with disabilities.
Families struggle to access specialized services for children, because they are required to travel long distances.
There is a need to expand the availability of GBV response services that ensure a focus on the needs of people at risk or survivors, confidentiality, respect, security and non-discrimination.
During December, 22,923 people received specialized protection services. Of those, 9,589 people benefited of legal and psychological support, such as legal and psychosocial support and specialized services. Some 43 per cent were men between 18 and 59 years old, 37 per cent were women between 18 and 59 years old, 8 per cent boys between less than 17 years old and 7 per cent were girls between of less than 17 years of age. Tachira, Apure and Zulia (in that order) were the states with the highest number of people assisted during the reporting period. These activities were also carried out in the states of Bolivar and Amazonas, albeit being more limited in scope.
A total of 478 vulnerable children and teenagers (27 per cent girls and 73 per cent boys) received protection services for unaccompanied and separated children, and12,554 vulnerable children and teenagers (52 per cent girls and 48 per cent boys), including GBV survivors, received integrated protection care services. Some 2,620 children and teenagers (50 per cent girls and 50 per cent boys) participated in individual and/or group psychosocial support activities. Most assistance was provided in the Miranda, Tachira, Zulia and Bolivar states. Other states where the mentioned activities were carried out include Zulia and Anzoategui.
A total of 302 people received GBV response services, which includes differentiated support (individual legal and/or psychosocial assistance) to GBV survivors (113 people), case management (184 people) and material assistance (5 people). More than half of the cases (68 per cent) were women between 20 and 49 years old, followed by women between 15 and 19 years old (18 per cent), men over 18 years (8 per cent), men between 15 and 19 years (4 percent) and girls between 10 and 14 years (2 per cent). The states with the greatest provision of these services were Capital District, Tachira and Zulia.
Awareness and training activities were organized for 3,983 people (28 per cent girls, 31 per cent boys, 29 per cent women and 12 per cent men), in order to increase the capacity of communities, families and children to respond to protection issues, and also to respond and prevent violence, abuse and exploitation of children. The states where the greatest number of people participated were Zulia, Bolivar and Miranda.
A total of 7,202 people participated in community awareness sessions for the prevention of GBV, of which 93 per cent participated in awareness-raising activities on prevention and response to GBV, 2 per cent received information about sexual and reproductive health rights and 5 per cent participated in activities to strengthen the Network of Safe Spaces and community networks for the prevention of GBV. Out of all the people who participated in community activities, 42 per cent were women between the ages of 20 and 49, 25 per cent were adult men, 24 per cent were women between 15 and 19 years old, 4 per cent were teenage men and 5 percent were children between 10 and 14 years of age. The states with the greatest number of participants were Tachira, Bolivar and Zulia.
The Protection Cluster will continue to provide training on the centrality of protection in humanitarian action to strengthen capacities of partners working in humanitarian response in Venezuela. It also plans to offer training on the legal framework for protection of internally displaced persons. The processes of referral to specialized services for children and their families still needs to be strengthened and systematized. Training to establish standards in services is planned for February and March for members of the Child Protection AoR.
The technical capacity of humanitarian institutions and organizations with a role in prevention, mitigation and response to GBV in emergencies, in accordance with international guidelines and in compliance with national regulations, still needs to be strengthened.