Gender and Migration Initiatives

A significant number of children arriving alone are girls, and many are survivors of sexual and gender-based violence (SGBV)

In FY2017, girls made up 32 percent of unaccompanied migrant children from Central America in the custody of the Office of Refugee Resettlement (ORR). These girls undertook the journey to the United States despite the well-known risks of sexual violence, trafficking, and other forms of violence and abuse along the migration route. Many were already fleeing sexual violence in their countries of origin, where they could not find protection or assistance. While there has been increased attention to child migration from Central America, insufficient attention has been paid to the specific needs and experiences of unaccompanied girls who make the perilous journey to the United States.

To respond to the needs of this uniquely vulnerable group, in 2015 KIND launched its Gender and Migration Initiatives (GMI), a new programming area focused on preventing and addressing sexual and gender-based violence (SGBV) against migrant children. The GMI combines research, policy advocacy, and programming to promote the rights and protection of migrant children, including survivors of SGBV, in all phases of their migration journey.

Feature Resource

Gender & Migration Initiatives (GMI) Fact Sheet

KIND’s Gender and Migration Initiative (GMI) seeks to prevent and address sexual and gender-based violence (SBGV) against migrant children. Learn more about how with our one-page fact sheet.

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Our Top Resources

September 9, 2020

Trapped and Targeted: Gender-based violence against children at the U.S.-Mexico Border

Many of the children fleeing their countries to seek safety in the United States are escaping severe forms of gender-based violence (GBV), including violence by gangs, child sexual abuse, and intra-fa...

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August 6, 2020

KIND works with partners to respond to the needs of children and families in Central America amid COVID-19 crisis

While the coronavirus pandemic has created an unprecedented level of vulnerability for children, families, and communities in Central America, KIND and our local partner organizations continue our com...

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May 13, 2020

Declaration of Experts on Violence Against Women in Honduras

In response to the State Department Human Right’s Report’s gutting of the violence against women section, KIND enlisted Honduran women’s rights experts to prepare the following exper...

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December 17, 2018

Gender-Based Violence (GBV) Fact Sheet

Sexual and gender-based violence (SGBV) forces many women, girls, and LGBTI persons to flee El Salvador, Guatemala, and Honduras. Learn more with the KIND fact sheet.

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November 26, 2019

Everyday Life is Fear: Violence Against Children and Youth in Honduras

In August 2019, Kids in Need of Defense (KIND) traveled to the Honduran cities of El Progreso, San Pedro Sula, and Tegucigalpa to learn more about the violence affecting children and youth.1 KIND met ...

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October 14, 2019

SGBV Prevention Programming for Youth in Honduras

Earlier this summer, KIND visited Casa Alianza, a children’s rights organization in Honduras, where a group of children and teens between the ages of 12 and 16 were gathered in a large classroom co...

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June 7, 2017
Sad and lonely girl crying with a hand covering her face (with space for text)

Childhood Cut Short: Sexual & Gender-Based Violence in Central America

A growing body of research indicates that many of these children are forced from their homes due to violence. However, less is known about the specific role of sexual and gender-based violence in driv...

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May 4, 2017
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Neither Security nor Justice: Report SGBV in Central America

The Northern Triangle of Central America, which includes El Salvador, Honduras, and Guatemala, is one of the most violent regions in the world. Along with staggering homicide rates, all three countrie...

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Silvia's Story

Silvia was forced to leave her home for the U.S. due to gender-based violence.
Hear her story and many more from KIND and UNICEF’s Central American Voices Project.


GMI partners with organizations in Guatemala and Honduras to engage potential and returning migrant children in SGBV prevention programming.  Our programming partners in Guatemala are Asociación Pop No’jColectivo Vida Digna, and ECAP, and our partner in Honduras is Casa Alianza Honduras.

In 2018 the GMI piloted SGBV prevention workshops with migrant youth in the Baltimore, and Washington DC areas.

Stand Up for Migrant Women and Girls

You can make a difference for these vulnerable women and girls who are forced to migrate.