In 2011, ActionAid International embarked on an ambitious new programme to prevent violence against women in urban public spaces. By the end of 2014, 13 countries across Africa, Asia, and Latin America were operating dedicated Safe Cities for Women programming. This article discusses the development of the Safe Cities Programme approach, highlighting how ActionAid has situated its work within – and in response to – the historic feminist global Safe Cities movement. It uses case studies from Nepal and Cambodia to illustrate the importance of coalition and movement building to secure policy change. We reflect on the sensitivities of an international NGO inhabiting space historically occupied by social movements.
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