Deutsche Gesellschaft für Internationale Zusammenarbeit (GIZ) GmbH

Dag-Hammarskjöld-Weg 1-5
65760 Eschborn

GIZ is a federally owned enterprise, supporting the German Government in achieving its objectives in the field of international cooperation for sustainable development. It operates in more than 130 countries, employing 17,000 staff members worldwide. GIZ was created in January 2011 merging the German Development Service (DED) the German technical cooperation (GTZ) and Capacity Building International, Germany (InWEnt).

GIZ operates in many sectors, including economic development and employment; governance and democracy; security, reconstruction, peace building and civil conflict transformation; food security, health, basic education; and environmental protection, resource conservation and climate change mitigation. In crises, GIZ carries out refugee and emergency aid programmes.

GIZ’s activities in violence prevention are concentrated in the areas of interpersonal and collective violence. The majority of activities in the field of interpersonal violence are related to the prevention of youth violence and violence against women. GIZ addresses the consequences of collective violence through social cohesion and transitional justice approaches, through demobilization of armed groups, and promotion of internationally agreed human rights treaties. It endorses a multi-sectorial approach to violence prevention and targets violence at different stages of the lifecycle.

GIZ, for instance, operates projects in the field of youth violence prevention in El Salvador, Liberia, South Africa and Timor-Leste. To inform policy development and programme planning, the sector project "Implementation of Children and youth Rights" developed a handbook on „Systemic prevention of Youth Violence“ (, available in English, Spanish, German).

Violence against women is addressed jointly by different entities within GIZ. The health section focuses on the provision of holistic care services integrated into HIV/AIDS and sexual and reproductive health programmes using a case management approach. It is currently operating programmes in the Democratic Republic of the Congo, in Rwanda and Kenya.

The health sector activities are complemented by several governance programmes focusing on the reduction of repeated violence among perpetrators through promotion of access to justice for survivors of domestic and sexual violence and advocacy for women’s rights for example in Kenya, Afghanistan and Colombia. A regional programme covering Peru, Ecuador, Bolivia and Paraguay addresses violence against women through support for the implementation of national policies and action plans and through partnerships with private sector enterprises. GIZ has also been implementing a regional project aimed at ending female genital mutilation since 1999.

VPA focal person

Dr Peter Schmitz
Department: Health, Education, Social Protection
Tel: +49 – 228 – 24 34 220

Dr Peter Schmitz is a medical doctor, specialised in surgery and public health. Before his medical studies he qualified in environmental and hygiene engineering and holds a diploma in health care & management in tropical countries. After several short term assignments in humanitarian assistance which started in 1982, he worked for the German development service (DED) in Namibia as a Regional Medical Officer of the Ministry of Health until 1999. From 2000 to 2009 he was Chief Medical Officer of Malteser International. His core function was strategic planning of humanitarian assistance and structural development in post-conflict and post-disaster situations. This included primary health care services, water sanitation and hygiene, HIV/AIDS, psychosocial care, gender based violence, livelihood and rehabilitation programmes. He has extensive experience teaching and training in humanitarian assistance, international health, HIV/AIDS and project management. In May 2009, he was appointed head of health programmes and medical services of former DED, now GIZ in Bonn.

Focal person for youth violence: Anna Rau and Dr Tina Silbernagl (
Focal person for FGM: Dr Gabriele Gahn (