“We as women's groups can find women in need when organisations can’t.” Engaging women in the humanitarian response in Afghanistan

Publication language
Date published
01 Mar 2024
Case study
Accountability to affected populations (AAP), Inclusion, Needs monitoring

Since their takeover of Afghanistan in 2021, the de facto authorities have introduced several directives limiting women’s access to education, employment, and public spaces.2 In December 2022, the ban prohibiting Afghan women from working for NGOs – expanded to UN agencies in April 2023 – impeded access to aid and support for vulnerable women throughout the country.3 Although some NGOs and UN agencies navigated the decree through local exceptions and continued their operations, 2023 saw the introduction of new bans further reducing support for projects aiming to reach women and girls.4 In July 2023, the Afghanistan Humanitarian Response Plan was critically underfunded, with less than half the amount received as the same time in 2022.5 The World Food Programme had to cut food assistance to two million people.6 Against this backdrop, engaging with women and men is critical to ensuring the humanitarian response is tailored to their respective needs and priorities. To strengthen accountability to women and girls in Afghanistan, in September 2023, Ground Truth Solutions and Salma Consulting completed our third round of data collection with support from UN Women and the Gender in Humanitarian Action Working Group.