Migration: assistance for victims of sexual violence

Project completed
A woman who experienced sexual violence.
A woman who experienced sexual violence. © Susana Oñoro

Many of the women and men migrating from sub-Saharan Africa that Morocco takes in are subjected to sexual violence during their journey. Switzerland provides medical assistance, social assistance and psychological counselling.

Country/region Topic Period Budget
Migration generally (development aspects and partnerships)
Reproductive health & rights
01.07.2016 - 31.12.2017
CHF  160’000

Morocco has become both a country of transit and destination for migrants from sub-Saharan Africa, many of whom have been subjected to physical and sexual violence on their journey. 

The SDC supports a major Moroccan NGO working actively against sexual violence, the Association for the Fight against AIDS (ALCS). The organisation provides assistance to Moroccans, refugees and migrants. Young women from sub-Saharan Africa aged 16 to 30 make up the majority of the ALCS’s beneficiaries. Many of them have been raped or forced into prostitution. Some however have managed to escape the trafficking networks. 

The ALCS provides them with individual psychological, medical and social support, organising group and one-to-one sessions to help them deal with their traumatic experiences. For the women who may be at risk of HIV, an emergency test (within 72 hours) is carried out. The ALCS helps them access specialised services such as treatment for HIV and TB, or vaccinations against hepatitis B. Pregnant women with HIV are given close attention. Women in acute need receive housing assistance, food vouchers and hygiene packs. 

The ALCS also looks after young men that have been abused and suffer in silence because the subject is taboo. It works within the migrant communities to identify such cases and offer these men the treatment they need.   

One of the most encouraging results is the number of healthy babies being born to mothers that are infected with HIV.