Organizational Background
OUR CORE VALUES

Integrity: COVAW is committed to the highest forms of accountability and honesty
Dignity: COVAW believes in freedom of choice and autonomy regarding bodily integrity
Courage: COVAW stands for what is right and just and takes intentional bold steps in unchartered paths to effect change for women and girls
Solidarity: COVAW is inspired by the principles of diversity, equity and equality, and empathises with, and supports women and girls to access social justice and human dignity
Commitment: COVAW is passionate about working for the safety and the wellbeing of women and girls. COVAW has a pledge to fulfil its promises

OUR MISSION

COVAW exists to champion the rights of women and girls to be free from all forms of violations.

OUR VISION

A society where women and girls enjoy equal rights, freedoms and thrive in safe spaces.

WHERE WE WORK

COVAW has its head office in Nairobi, plus satellite offices in Kwale and Narok. We work in Nairobi, Kwale, Narok, Kiambu, Kisumu, and Migori.

WHO WE WORK WITH

We recognize that no single actor by themselves can sustainably address the root causes of discrimination and VAWG. We engage multiple actors and pursue multiple strategies across multiple levels to achieve our vision. Our key actors are the community, civil society, government and private sector. We will continue to use these partnerships to scale up and accelerate solutions that we have tested and proved to work.

WHAT WE DO

Over the years, COVAW has invested in empowering women and girls to claim their rights; enabling equitable access to services, resources and opportunities; facilitating greater access to justice for survivors of Sexual and Gender Based Violence (SGBV); and supporting change agents opposed to and committed to eradication of all forms of VAWG.
Our interventions are designed to deliberately address norms, attitudes, laws, policies and practices that affect women’s and girl’s safety and wellbeing in general. This is done through supporting development and implementation of gender progressive laws, policies and guidelines and consistent engagement with different actors to prevent and respond to VAWG and to hold perpetrators of these violations accountable.
COVAW understands that ending all forms of discrimination and VAWG is not only a basic human right, but it is also crucial to enabling sustainable development. We also believes that VAWG is preventable and people have the capacity to learn and change their attitudes towards women and girls.
COVAW’s New Strategic Plan for 2018-2023: Securing Rights: Influencing Sustained Engagement on Violations of Women and Girls in Kenya outlines the organizations’ ambitions, interventions and approach for reaching our vision of a society where women and girls enjoy equal rights, freedoms, and thrive in safe spaces. In developing the strategy, deliberate attempts have been made to ensure alignment with, and contributions to Sustainable Development Goal (SDG) 5, relevant international protocols/ conventions on women’s rights, as well as national gender priorities.

Our Strategic Focus Areas:

  1. Access to Comprehensive SGBV and Sexual and Reproductive Health and Rights (SRHR) Services
  2. Women’s Economic Empowerment
  3. Women’s Leadership Development
  4. Access to Justice
  5. Institutional development

Through these pillars we seek to contribute to empowering women and girls, and ending discrimination and VAWG. We will also advocate for a progressive policy environment, address any attempts at reversal of hard-won gains on gender equality, and support capacity development of key actors engaged in promotion and protection of rights and freedoms of women and girls.

THE BEGINNING

The Coalition on Violence Against Women (COVAW) is a national Kenyan not-for-profit women’s rights organization. We are committed to advancing women’s rights; and work towards achieving a society free from all forms of Violence against Women and Girls (VAWG). The organisation was founded in 1995 as a response to the silence of the Kenyan society to addressing VAWG.
The origin of COVAW is traced to a workshop by Women in Law and Development in Africa (WiLDAF), which identified two critical areas that no actor was addressing, which were VAWG and the limited number of women in key leadership positions. The workshop underscored the need to form a coalition that would address these problems, thus the establishment of COVAW. Since its inception, we have focused on the maxim of ‘breaking the silence on VAWG’. We have succeeded in moving the issue of VAWG from the private to the public domain, positioning it as a crime and a human rights violation.