This document is a resource for organisations and communities to help in the development, implementation and monitoring of concrete actions to prevent, reduce, mitigate and respond to interpersonal violence—physical, sexual, emotional and neglect.


  • The ten steps are: 1. Understand the problem; 2. Recognise people’s vulnerability and resilience; 3. Define protection instruments; 4. Create a prevention team; 5. Complete a risk assessment; 6. Develop policies and procedures; 7. Educate adults, youth and children; 8. Respond to disclosures of violence; 9. Meet the challenges; and 10. Maintain safe environments.
  • Definitions of Gender-Based Violence can be found on page 15 and page 22 highlights the importance of gender inequality as a key risk factor for violence.
  • Power, when it is misused is a key root cause or social determinant of violence. The relationship between power dynamics and gender is described on page 23. Inequality, harmful attitudes about gender, control, and misuse of power can combine to heighten the risk of gender-based violence. Sample statistics on gender-based violence can be found on page 28.
  • Protection instruments for the safety of women and girls such as the UN Convention on Elimination of Discrimination Against Women (CEDAW) are listed on page 36.
  • A gender analysis is vital for any risk assessment and should focus on men, women, girls and boys. An overview of a gender analysis is provided on page 45.

Usage: Guidance for project implementation

Audiences: Technical staff; Gender and diversity practitioners

Reference: Fairholm, J., Sing, G. (2011). Ten steps to creating safe environments: How organisations and communities can prevent, mitigate and respond to interpersonal violence. Canadian Red Cross. Pp. 2-99. Available from: http://www.redcross.ca/crc/documents/3-5-7-1_respected_2011_tensteps_english_c15_proof.pdf [Accessed: 18th July 2016].


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