SAT launches GBV violence policy brief

THE SRHR Africa Trust (SAT), a non -governmental organization that supports community systems for sexual and reproductive health rights(SRHR) has launched a sexual Gender Based Violence (GBV) policy brief.

By Patricia Mashiri

The policy brief was done in collaboration with the Zimbabwe Republic Police (ZRP) Victim Friendly Unit (VFU)  with the aim of producing evidence on sexual violence which informs the community on the scale on SGBV as well as lead to increased identification and reporting.

Speaking during the launch, Dr Mildred Mushunje, the SAT Country Director said the policy brief explains the trends within 2018 and 2019.

We want to find ways of sensitizing, informing and talking with communities so that they start to report abuse so that we start to see a trend in which people really stand against SGBV and report on it. It is also to use within our programing in different organizations and start to think how you can strengthen. Our key message is we want to end SGBV against women and girls as a must.

“When violence it should be reported including third part reporting. SGBV must end for gender equality to be a reality and it is everyone’s responsibility and to ensure that justice prevails. Men and boys should come on board and be responsible. for ending GBV,” said Dr Mushunje.

Meanwhile, VFU National Coordinator Chief Superintendent Jessie Banda commended the work being done by the Civil Society Organizations in addressing GBV in their various capacities.

“We are glad to see the GBV policy brief being launched today as we have worked well with SAT identifying the gaps in the GBV response and better ways of programming. It is important to note that pre-existing toxic social norms and gender inequalities, economic and social isolation measures have, led to an exponential increase in GBV. Zimbabwe has not been spared with the COVID-19 pandemic. Zimbabwe reported an increase in the number of violence against women and children at healthcare centers in various provinces,” said Superintendent Banda.

She added that some of the contributing factors to GBV are societal norms on sexual rights and manhood, bride price conflicts, socialization of processes that condone abuse among others.

According to the report by Save the Children, out of 149 countries Zimbabwe is ranked 109 as one of the worst places to be a girl. Available statistics highlights that 34% of the girls in Zimbabwe are married before the age of 18.

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