top of page
general public main image

General Public

Sexual and Gender-Based Violence (SGBV) refers to any act that is perpetrated against a person's will and is based on gender norms and unequal power relationships. It encompasses a wide range of physical, sexual and psychological harm. While women and girls are often the primary victims, SGBV can also affect men and boys. Types of SGBV include, but are not limited to:


Physical, sexual and psychological violence occurring in the family, including battering, sexual exploitation and abuse, marital rape, female genital mutilation/cutting and other practices harmful to women.  Also occurring within the general community, including rape, sexual abuse, sexual harassment and intimidation, trafficking, and forced prostitution.


Physical, sexual and psychological violence perpetrated or condoned by the state and institutions, wherever it occurs.


Economic abuse, such as denial of resources, opportunities, or services.


Forced marriage, where individuals are forced into marriages without their consent.


Honour crimes, where violence (often lethal) is inflicted on individuals, often women, based on a belief that they have brought dishonour upon the family or community.

It's important to understand that SGBV stems from structural gender inequalities that give privilege to male norms over female ones (though it's worth noting that men can also be victims). Its prevention and redress require multi-faceted approaches, from legal and policy interventions to shifts in cultural norms and values. The consequences of SGBV are grave, with survivors often experiencing lasting physical and mental health challenges

sexual gender based violence image
sgbv woman


Sexual and Gender-Based Violence (SGBV) is a critical concern in Europe, as it is globally. The exact statistics can vary based on the source of the data, the definition of SGBV employed and the timeframe of the study.


One of the most comprehensive surveys on this topic was conducted by the European Institute for Gender Equality (EIGE) and the European Union Agency for Fundamental Rights (FRA). Here are some key findings from the FRA survey conducted with women across the EU in 2014:

sgbv statistics
Sexual Harrasment
Intimate Partner Violence
  1.  About 33% or 62 million women have experienced physical and/or sexual violence since the age of 15.

  2. 11% of women have experienced inappropriate advances on social media or have been subjected to sexually explicit emails or SMS messages.


Tips for reporting SGBV

Reporting signs of sexual and gender-based violence (SGBV) can make a significant difference in the life of a victim. For the general public aiming to report such signs, here are some crucial tips to keep in mind:

Stay safe:

Before attempting to intervene or report, ensure you and the victim are in a safe place, away from any immediate danger.

Listen actively:

If someone discloses their experience to you, listen without interrupting. Be non-judgmental, supportive, and let them know they are believed.

Gather details:

Note down any specific details about the incident(s) if safe and appropriate to do so, such as date, time, location, and involved individuals. This can be helpful in any subsequent investigations.

Use established hotlines:

Many regions have toll-free helplines dedicated to SGBV. Use them to report incidents, get guidance, or find local resources.

Stay anonymous:

If you're concerned about your identity being revealed, inquire about anonymous reporting options.

Contact local authorities:

If you believe someone is in immediate danger, contact the police or local law enforcement.

Seek organisations specialising in SGBV:

There are numerous NGOs and organisations specialising in assisting SGBV victims. Reach out for advice on how best to assist or report.

Document evidence:

If possible and without infringing on the victim's privacy, collect any potential evidence, like photographs of injuries or torn clothing.

Stay updated:

After reporting, if safe, follow up to know the status or see if any additional information is required.

Educate yourself:

Be familiar with the signs of SGBV and local resources. The more you know, the better equipped you are to assist.

Respect the victim's wishes:

Always prioritize the victim's decisions regarding reporting. Some might not want to take formal action, and it's essential to respect their autonomy.

Provide support:

Offer information on local counselling or support groups for victims. Being there emotionally can make a considerable difference.

Avoid confronting the perpetrator:

Direct confrontation can escalate the situation and further endanger the victim.

Protect personal information:

Ensure any information, especially that which pertains to the victim, is shared discreetly and only with relevant authorities or support structures.

Remember, reporting signs of SGBV is a sensitive and potentially life-saving action. Approach the situation with care, empathy and a genuine desire to help.

bottom of page