The First Crisis Center for the Victims of Domestic Violence has been opened in Tbilisi

Date: Tuesday, September 6, 2016

State Fund for the Protection and Assistance of the (Statutory) Victims of Human Trafficking (hereinafter “State Fund”) hosted an opening ceremony of the first state-run crisis center for the victims of domestic violence in Georgia based in the capital, Tbilisi. The event was supported by UN Women in the framework of the UN Joint Programme to Enhance Gender Equality funded by the government of Sweden.

David Sergeenko, Minister of Labour, Health and Social Affairs and Molly Lien, Head of Swedish Development Cooperation ; Crisis center opening ceremony; Photo: MoLHSA
The long-standing cooperation between the State Fund and UN Women since 2010 has resulted in the establishment four shelters for victims of domestic violence and the nation-wide domestic violence hotline 116 006. However, until now there had been no state-run crisis centers in Georgia constituting a significant gap in ensuring universal, free of charge access to services to the victims/survivors of domestic violence.

“I am very happy to launch this state funded crisis center that will provide services to all in need, regardless of their official victim status” stated Mr. David Sergeenko, the Minister of Labour, Health and Social Affairs of Georgia at the opening ceremony.

Head of Swedish Development Cooperation Ms. Molly Lien stressed, that “the opening of the center is remarkable not only because it provides much needed services to the victims of domestic violence, but also because it contributes to broader gender equality agenda in the country and to the achievement of Sustainable Development Goals”.

From left to right Tamar Barkalaia, Head of State Protection and Assistance of Victims of Human Trafficking, Erika Kvapilova, UN Women Country Representative, Molly Lien, Head of Swedish Development Cooperation and David Sergeenko, Minister of Labour, Health and Social Affairs. Crisis center opening ceremony; Photo: UN Women
Ms. Erika Kvapilova, UN Women Country Representative underlined that the opening of the first state-run crisis center is “an important step forward in meeting governments commitments under the Law of Georgia on the Elimination of Domestic Violence, Protection of and Support to Its Victims as well as of the National Action Plan for Combating Violence against Women and Domestic Violence for the years 2016-2017.” The plan for the establishment of the state-run crisis center has been already welcome by Ms. Dubravka Simonovic, UN Special Rapporteur on violence against women, its causes and consequences in her Georgia specific report issues released earlier this year (June 2016). 

The Tbilisi crisis center has the possibility to accommodate alleged victims of domestic violence until the official domestic violence victim status is granted that entitles beneficiaries to be transferred to state-run shelters. The victims not willing/needing to be placed in a crisis center or shelter can visit the center for other services such as psycho-social rehabilitation, legal aid, first aid/emergency medical assistance during the working days. The crisis center that was opened in Tbilisi can accommodate 18 persons at once, including children and persons with special needs (disabilities).


UN Women in partnership with the government of Sweden and European Union plans to support expanding of the network of crisis centers in other regions of Georgia, providing services not only to the victims of domestic violence but also to the victims/survivors of sexual violence outside the context of domestic violence. The plans also include elaboration of standards for the service provision for the victims/survivors of sexual violence and development of a training-module on the issues of sexual violence for the employees of the state-run center, shelters and the hotline.