Ending Violence Against Women in the Western Balkan Countries and Turkey “Implementing norms, changing minds”

Ending violence against women


Phase II of the programme builds on the results achieved and the partnerships fostered during Phase I.  

Phase I of the Project aimed at creating an enabling legislative and policy environment in line with international standards on eliminating violence against women and all forms of discrimination, promoting favorable social norms and attitudes to promote gender equality and prevent violence against women and discrimination by empowering women and girls to advocate for and use available, accessible and quality services.  

The focus of the Phase II is further strengthening of capacities of NGOs specialized service providers for victims of violence to offer quality services to victims through the process of reporting violence and integration in the society. Phase II of the Project was altered to contribute to the response to COVID 19 pandemic. Thus, its focus is on enabling specialized services providers to strengthen their financial and operational resilience. Furthermore, women’s NGOs are encouraged to establish and train persons involved in informal networks of support, out of official support services where women can approach and ask for assistance and supported to establish web-based platforms for legal counselling support and increase the professional capacities engaged in provision of legal aid.


GBV and VAW remain pressing issues in Montenegro. Although certain progress has been made, especially when it comes to legislative and policy framework, the issues such as deeply rooted patriarchal norms and stereotypes, lack of awareness in terms of both individuals and institutions in addition to the lack of efficient systemic response and commitment for protection of victims of GBV, further exacerbate the consequences and the issue of GBV and VAWG. 

The pandemic has unveiled the existing barriers that victims of GBV face when accessing the justice, including but not limited to gender stereotypes, prejudices, lack of efficient and effective intersectoral cooperation, refraining from applying the urgent procedures by the authorities, predominantly applying protection measures which were not adjusted to the COVID context, etc.  

GREVIO pays special attention, amongst other issues, to strategic planning for the establishment and advancement of specialized support services, in accordance with the IC. It is important that services are accessible, available, and provided in quality manner, establishment of specialized services providers needs particular attention and support, since they are being provided by NGOs that are still trying to achieve standards required for licensing, and whose sustainable funding has not yet been resolved.

Project Outcome

  • Supported 12 women’s NGOs, among which 11 specialized service support for victims of GBV;

  • 2 large networks all around Montenegro to respond to COVID19;

  • 14 WNGO staff based on the practical guide for the safe delivery of services through a mobile application “Be Safe”; 

  • Provided capacity building for six women’s rights partner NGOs;

  • WNGOs organized 9 meetings with the representatives of the local self-governments on GBV;

  • 8 roadmaps for 8 WNGOs were developed for the licensing of specialist services.

Major Achievements


  • Evaluation of the Strategy for combating domestic violence (2016-2020) 

  • National Action Plan for Implementation of Istanbul Convention 

  • Assessment of the costs of the specialized services for the victims of VAWG 

  • the strategic dialogue between the representatives of the WNGOs and the new Minister of Finance and Social Welfare held on February 19, 2021 

  • GREVIO Shadow Report developed by 4 women’s NGOs 

  • CEDAW Shadow Report developed by 4 women’s NGOs 

  • Study on the effects of COVID-19 on women survivors of violence specially focusing on the women from minority and disadvantaged groups developed by NGO SOS Niksic