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The conversation about sexual exploitation and abuse in international aid isn't over...

We're just getting #LOUDER.

Join us for VOICE's 16 Days of Activism, taking place across all of our social media channels. Follow us on Instagram, LinkedIn, Facebook, and Twitter to gain solid handles on how to actively participate in protecting women and girls around the world.


Did you catch our webinar?

On November 18, VOICE facilitated the first of many conversations that we will host about sexual exploitation and abuse in the international aid sector (as mentioned above, the conversation continues for the next 16 days -- at least!).

Facilitated by  our Executive Director Mendy Marsh,  the conversation, titled "It's Not Just A Few Bad Apples," centered around the "open secret" that has plagued the work of humanitarians and tarnished the reputation of our industry. It's time we go beyond trying to root out what is dismissed simply as a few “bad apples” and chart a new way for institutional and system-wide change that protects women and girls. VOICE suggests that the aid industry can benefit from a new, feminist perspective when it comes to international aid, and we enjoyed a spirited discussion with our panelists about what that might look like.

Our Panelists:

Alina Potts is a Research Scientist with the Global Women’s Institute, where she centers refugee women and girls in participatory action research on SEA in humanitarian settings through "Empowered Aid". Previously, Alina coordinated violence prevention research at UNICEF, focusing on intersections between violence against women and children. As a practitioner, she led GBV programming for the International Rescue Committee in a number of humanitarian responses over 10 years; and worked in refugee resettlement in the US and Europe. She is actively involved in teaching, mentoring, and capacity-sharing initiatives.

Pamela Shifman is a passionate and experienced advocate for girls and women's rights, social justice, and transformative philanthropy. For 12 years, her leadership has shaped the work of the NoVo Foundation, first as Director of NoVo’s Initiatives for Girls and Women and then as Executive Director of the NoVo Foundation from 2014 through 2019, where she oversaw the Foundations historic 90 million dollar commitment to girls of color, the creation of NoVo Foundations’ Radical Hope Fund and a myriad of funding strategies dedicated to grassroots women’s and girls’ rights movements all over the world.

Doris Maholo Saydee is a feminist and a champion for social justice. She has over 14 years’ work experience in program management, implementation, coordination advocacy and supervision with the UN system, the Government of Liberia, and INGO in humanitarian, development and peacekeeping settings in East and West Africa. She most recently served as Gender Affairs Officer for the UN Mission in South Sudan where she supported the implementation of UN Resolutions on women, peace and security within the scope of the Mission’s mandate and DPO Policy on Gender Responsive Peacekeeping Operations.

Francisca Vigaud-Walsh has been working on refugee, IDP, and migrant protection matters for close to twenty years, with a specialization in GBV prevention and response. Passionate about accountability to women and girls, she has undertaken research and policy work to influence reforms in the humanitarian system for women and girls. Most recently, she served the Independent High-Level Commission on Sexual Misconduct, Accountability, and Culture Change at Oxfam, where she led research on the organization’s safeguarding policy and practice, and authored the Commission’s reports for reforms at Oxfam and beyond.


Watch the recording HERE

Please reach out to us at if you'd like to collaborate with us, or be a part of this conversation going forward. 

The inbox is available. For those who need it, we are here to listen. Click here.
All smiles from our Social Media for Advocacy and Community Engagement workshop with this awesome group from Bangladesh! The spotlight is on VOICE’s amazing regional technical lead Sharanya!

#AmplifyHerVOICE #LOUDER #VOICEworkshops 

Did you know?

Did you know…women are leaving the work force at higher rates than men due to the coronavirus pandemic?

Unlike other modern recessions and global crises, the coronavirus pandemic has led to more women leaving the work force than men. The U.S. Department of Labor reported that in September alone, “865,000 women left the workforce or were laid off nationwide, compared with 216,000 men.” 

While some women were furloughed or laid off, “one in four women reported choosing to leave the work force because of a lack of child-care”, according to American Progress. With child-care facilities shutting down due to the pandemic, women have had to take on these responsibilities in the home.

While it may be easy to blame the pandemic for the “shecession”, we need to bring attention to the root causes of gender inequality so that we can appropriate responsibility where it truly belongs, and effect change in the structures of society that exist to oppress women. 

Women, and mothers especially are being pushed out of the workplace not only because of the pandemic, but because of the failures of the governments, institutions and workplaces that should be supporting them.


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