Skip to main content

Protection from Violence

Ensuring children and young people can live free from violence. 

Protection from violence 

Ensuring children and young people can live free from violence. 

Every child has the right to live free from violence. At home. In school. In public spaces. In their communities. Everywhere.  
But girls and young women especially find this right repeatedly violated. Their age and gender mean they are more likely to experience certain forms of violence. Such as sexual exploitation, female genital mutilation (FGM) and child marriage.
This violence can have serious and lasting consequences on their wellbeing – physical, emotional and mental. It can limit girls’ choices in life and stop them from reaching their full potential. 
We cannot achieve an equal world when half of the world’s population lives under the threat of violence. That’s why we’re working with communities to challenge and stop behaviours that lead to it. 

Learn more about protection from violence

Learn more about protection from violence

What is protection from violence? 

What is protection from violence? 

Protection from violence is about upholding children and young people’s right to live free from violence and fear. In practice, that means both preventing and responding to violence carried out against children and young people. This violence can be physical, mental or sexual. It also includes abuse, harassment and neglect.  
The types of violence which Plan International seeks to address include practices and behaviours, from child marriage to public sexual harassment. 

Girls like Margareta say ‘No!’ 

“My friends and I learnt that we need to use the ‘No! Go Tell’ steps,” explains 17-year-old Margareta from Indonesia.  

“If a stranger or person we know acts inappropriately, we tell them ‘No!’, and then Go and Tell a trusted adult.” 

Margareta learnt these crucial steps to staying safe through a class run by Plan International.  

Ensuring girls have the knowledge and skills to identify, prevent and stop violence helps them stay safe. 
“Since attending the classes, I have more confidence in asking questions about my sexual and reproductive health as well as seeking advice,” says Margareta.

Margareta, 17, standing in front of a brick wall in Indonesia smiling at the camera
Margareta, 17, learnt about the ‘No! Go Tell’ steps through Plan International in Indonesia

Ending violence against girls

Ending violence against girls

Violence against girls and young women is deeply rooted in a system of unequal power between women and men. It is often done by men and boys and is used to hold power and control.

We bring people together – authorities, communities, families and partners – to stop these harmful, violent practices against girls and young women. Practices such as child marriage, female genital mutilation (FGM) and trafficking.

Instead, we encourage healthy relationships between genders from an early age. We empower girls and boys to identify and stop violence they may experience. And we seek to end the power structures and attitudes that perpetuate violence.

Jeidy, 24, a teacher in the Dominican Republic standing in a street smiling at the camera
Teacher Jeidy shares her knowledge in sexual exploitation through to help protect girls in her community.

The women looking out for girls

"I have realised that sometimes girls accept things they don't agree to because their parents want them to.  
“They think that because they are minors they can't make their own decisions. This has to change."  
Jeidy, 24, is a teacher from the Dominican Republic.  
She took part in training on sexual exploitation run by Plan International and now shares her knowledge to help keep girls safe – both inside and outside her classroom.  
"I always tell the young people, that I want them to take my place one day, to prepare themselves and participate more actively. I think that that is what we are here for, to share our knowledge.”

Stand with girls to end violence

Help girls learn about their rights and drive change.