Gender-Responsive Temporary Settlements in the Wake of Earthquakes in Türkiye
Following the devastating earthquakes that struck Türkiye on February 6, 2023, UN Women has taken a leading role in responding to the gendered needs of women and girls and their families, including in the provision of temporary housing for those made homeless by the earthquakes. Recognizing that crises do not impact all segments of the population equally, UN Women Türkiye has advocated for a gender-responsive settlement model, an innovative approach that prioritizes the housing needs and rights of vulnerable groups, particularly women and girls.
In line with its commitment to foster gender-responsive governance and community leadership to address humanitarian challenges, UN Women Türkiye has launched the Gender-Responsive Temporary Settlements (GTS) initiative. Through inclusive design and community engagement and empowerment, the GTS model sets out to mitigate risks that may arise from gender-blind temporary shelters and enhance the safety and security of women and girls. From well-lit pathways to gender-segregated facilities, the GTS ensures that temporary shelters prioritize women’s protection and dignity.
To effectively respond to the unique circumstances and needs of the affected population, the implementation of GTS is driven by continuous monitoring and evaluation, collection of gender-disaggregated data and comprehensive needs assessments.
Moreover, the GTS initiative champions women’s leadership and participation in decision-making processes and community management towards greater inclusivity. To do so, the initiative has incorporated "Women’s Solidarity Center,” a partnership between UN Women, Koç Holding, Oxfam KEDV. The center has become a haven for women and girls, and a hub for community activities aiming at helping impacted people return to normalcy. The involvement of residents in its design and construction has fostered vibrant community engagement.
As Türkiye continues its journey towards recovery and resilience, gender-responsive initiatives such as the GTS are vital to ensure that no one is left behind. By placing women and girls at the heart of the settlement strategy, UN Women Türkiye champions a more just, inclusive, and resilient future for all. With its local partners, UN Women Türkiye is committed to continue working tirelessly to alleviate the effects of the earthquakes and rebuild better and more equal communities.
UN Women Türkiye is actively working on the ground against the devastating impacts of the earthquake on women and girls in coordination with public authorities, civil society, and UN agencies. If you would like to support UN Women’s efforts in the earthquake zone in Türkiye and help women, girls and their families who are in urgent need, please donate here.