Gender Matters (2019)

A Manual on Gender-Based Violence Affecting Young People

This manual constitutes an introduction to social gender and gender-based violence and is useful for anyone who works with young people. It includes topics and practical methods that provide reflection and raise awareness among young people about gender and gender-based violence related to a number of key social, political and legal issues.

Gender-based violence refers to any type of harm done to a person or a group of people because of their actual or perceived gender, sexual orientation and / or gender identity. Gender-based violence can be sexual, physical, verbal, psychological (emotional) or socio-economic, and it can take many forms, from verbal violence and hate speech on the Internet to rape or murder. Statistics show that gender-based violence affects women largely.

This type of violence, like all other types of violence, undermines the fundamental human rights values which are the foundation of the Council of Europe and which the Member States have signed up. This is a problem in all Member States, which affects millions of women and men, young people and children, regardless of their social status, cultural or religious background.

Preventing, addressing and combating gender-based violence are intrinsic to human rights education, youth work and non-formal learning activities that support young people on their path to autonomy as active citizens mindful of everyone’s human rights.

Gender Matters should be used as a practical resource in guiding young people to become more aware of their own actions and actions of the others. The manual contributes to a better understanding of how to protect our dignity, how to keep ourselves safe and how to support those who have experienced violence in their lives.

*The manual is available online in English and French on links below:


  • Council of Europe. Manuals and Handbooks. Council of Europe – official website:
  • Ruxandra Pandea, Dariusz Grzemny, Ellie Keen. 2019. Gender Matters. A manual on addressing gender-based violence affecting young people. (2nd revised edition). Council of Europe: