Regional Emergency GBV Advisors (REGA)

Regional Emergency GBV Advisors (REGA) 

The GBV AoR Regional Emergency GBV Advisors (REGA) and the Rapid Response Teams (RRT) mechanisms were initiated to respond to the identified need for stronger GBV capacity at the country level.

The REGA and the RRT deploy senior GBV technical experts as inter-agency resources to strengthen country level humanitarian responses. The RRT and REGA represent the GBV AoR membership and strive to play a catalyzing role in ensuring comprehensive GBV programming and coordination. They provide support to UN leadership for GBV prevention and response by working closely with UN HCTs, GBV sub-cluster coordinators and members, including national partners, NGOs and INGOs. Ultimately, the REGA and the RRT aim to ensure that GBV concerns are raised and analyzed in needs assessments translating into adequate GBV humanitarian programming from the very beginning of the humanitarian response, including GBV targeted action and integrated programming into the overall response.

The REGA and the RRT support the work of the GBV AoR in the development of tools, resources and guidance for GBV emergency prevention and response grounded in field experience and good practice to strengthen GBV programming capacity.

The REGA Initiative

The primary role of the REGA is to build sustainable capacity across humanitarian sectors and clusters. The REGA provide support to regional and national level emergency planning and preparedness, advocacy and resource mobilization efforts through mentorship, inter-agency planning, and training on systems and tools relevant to GBV and non-GBV actors.

 The regional GBV advisors are placed in UNFPA regional hubs and made available for country missions based on an inter-agency request (two signing parties). So far in 2016, REGA geographic coverage is:

  • Cairo – Arab states and North Africa
  • Bangkok – Asia (South East and South Asia) and the Pacific
  • Nairobi – East Africa
  • Dakar – Central and West Africa
  • Geneva – REGA management, supervision and remote support

In addition, the GBV AoR is seeking funding (see Funding Appeal 2016) to initiate REGA deployments to strengthen support to Asia, as well as South Africa and Latin America.

Examples of 2015 REGA mission support includes the development of GBV specific contingency planning in preparedness for potential violence ahead of Burundi elections, supporting the development of national inter-agency SOPs outlining GBV responses and referral systems, roles and responsibilities of UN, government and NGO actors, for example in the Central African Republic. REGA contributed to the inter-agency multi sector GBV assessment of the Syria response with advice on methodology and country missions to Turkey and Iraq and accompanied the transition of emergency GBV coordination in Nepal to the recovery and development phases in support of national leadership.


REGA 2016 Country support missions

  • Ethiopia
  • Malaysia
  • Nigeria – two missions focusing on Adamawa state (February) and Borno state (April)


Potential upcoming missions

  • Cameroon
  • Sudan
  • Yemen
  • Iraq
  • Chad
  • Syria

Please contact for all mission reports and a REGA request package.

 The Rapid Response Team (RRT)

The 2015 REGA Review recommended the reintroduction of a RRT to provide inter-agency surge capacity and reinforce impact of the REGA longer term focus through a two-pronged approach.

The RRT was established in 2011 to provide expert GBV surge capacity in support of GBV prevention and response, including initiating multi-sector and interagency coordination and GBV specific programming from the very beginning of sudden onset emergencies.

RRT emergency missions focus on setting up GBV coordination, supporting needs assessments, capacity mapping and emergency resource mobilization. As an example, RRT missions strengthened GBV prevention and response in Kachin, Myanmar, the Philippines response to Typhoon Haiyan, North West Pakistan and Afghanistan. They also contributed to establishing and/or strengthening information management tools and systems to support GBV programming and coordination. More specifically, they contributed to the development of the GBV in Emergencies (GBViE) training and lead its delivery in Syria, Egypt, Iraq, Lebanon and Jordan and supported the rollout of the GBV Information Management System.

Establishing a two-pronged GBV operational approach

In October 2013, the GBV AoR noted the achievements and challenges faced by the RRT in responding to field requests. Although the RRT provided necessary support in each region of their deployment, the very limited local and regional GBV capacity at the onset of crises was identified as one of the key challenges to the RRT, in addition to political sensitivity. The RRTs found that gender and GBV were often regarded as development issues and that gender level expertise within country programs was linked to development programming and not humanitarian response. The need for a more sustained long term effort to build GBV humanitarian capacity was identified to reinforce the efforts of the RRTs, including increased focus on GBV risk reduction, preparedness and recovery.

It is against this background that the REGA initiative was established in 2014 to provide for more sustained, strategic capacity building efforts to both lay the ground for the RRT and to build on the achievements from emergency assignments of the RRT.



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