Zimbabwe: Council strives to end gender violence

Zimbabwe: Council strives to end gender violence

Date: June 26, 2015
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Harare, 26 June: Makoni Rural District Council (MRDC) is among the various councils that have embarked on different projects that are aimed at curbing Gender Based Violence (GBV).

Tendai Ndagumirwa, an official at the MRDC said the council has embarked on a project that has benefited 519 women. He said the project aims at economically empowering women and raising awareness of gender based violence within the district.

“As MRDC, we realized that there were a lot of reports of gender based violence in the district and it is for that reason that we decided to come up with a project that will empower women economically and raise awareness about gender based violence in the district.

“In coming up with the solution, the council conducted needs assessment programme and also we engaged the community through the use of questionnaires. We also got statistics from Rusape one stop centre so as to know the number of cases we had to address,” he said.

Ndagumirwa said the main activities of the project entail generation of household income, viability assessment and loan disbursement and monitoring and evaluation. He said the council has: facilitated the circulation of funds in 20 wards; the building of safe houses for gender based violence survivors; involving local leadership in gender council; the implementation of AIDS policy at work places; and putting in place a monitoring and evaluation committee.

In a bid to monitor and evaluate the success of the project, the council regularly visits the sites and inspects the books of accounts.

However, Ndagumirwa said the council has faced a number of challenges that include lack of livelihood support especially orphans, centralization of services in Rusape town and challenges in information dissemination.

“In the face of the challenges we have been faced with as a council, we have come up with measures to address the challenges. The measures include the formation of support groups that assist the orphans, partnering with Zimbabwe Republic Police with police base camps were established at eight ward health centres and providing motor cycles to councilors,” he said.

Ndagumirwa said for the sustainability and replication of the project, there is a need for direct government funding, livelihood support of victims and survivors and monitoring and evaluating the service delivery.

According to the SADC Gender Protocol Barometer 2015 Zimbabwe, gender based violence in the country reveals that women continue to experience high levels of physical and sexual abuse and violence remains one of the most pervasive women’s rights violations which men use to keep women in subordinate roles.

This article is part of the Gender Links News Service special coverage of the SADC Gender Protocol Summits underway across the region, offering fresh views on everyday news.



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