16 Days of Activism Against GBV
USAID is observing the 16 Days of Activism Against Gender-based Violence from November 25th – December 10th.
USAID and the Government of Kenya will be participating in 16 Days activities throughout Kenya. Click on your area and join us!
U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton explains that the 16 Days of Activism Against Gender Violence will “renew the commitment to free women and girls from the nightmare of violence, because the future safety and security of our world depends on it.”
The Impact of Gender-based Violence
Gender-based violence impacts individuals, their families, communities and countries. It compromises not only the safety, dignity, health and human rights of the people who experience it, but also the public health, economic stability, and security of nations. Unless women, girls, men and boys enjoy basic human rights and are free from violence, they will not be able to realize their potential and contribute to a better country.
Women and girls bear the brunt of the effects of gender-based violence, but men and boys are also affected. Women who are abused by their partners are less likely to earn a living and less able to care for their children. Children who witness violence are significantly more at risk for health problems, anxiety disorders, poor school performance and violent behavior.
Addressing gender-based violence is critical to building a stable, democratic nation; to supporting open and accountable governance; to achieving national peace and security; to growing vibrant market economies and to addressing important health and education challenges. This is why the United States is investing more than $4 million to help Kenya address the problem of gender based violence.
Gender based Violence in Kenya
The disputed presidential elections of December 2007 resulted in an outbreak of violence across Kenya, with reports of more than 1,000 deaths. According to the Report of the Commission Investigating Post Election Violence (Waki Report), women and girls were among the casualties of the violence, with a high incidence of gender-based violence. Women and girls are at great risk of being disproportionately affected by any new conflicts in the run-up to the 2013 elections.
The Kenya Demographic and Health Survey 2008-2009 includes questions about gender violence. The survey found:
• One in five Kenyan women has experienced sexual violence.
• 12 percent of women age 15-49 report that their first sexual intercourse was forced against their will.
• Nyanza and Western provinces have the highest proportions of women experiencing sexual violence.
• 37 percent of women who have experienced sexual violence report current husbands or partners as the perpetrators
• 45 percent of women age 15-49 have experienced either physical or sexual violence
• 27 percent of women are circumcised
• 82% of Kenyan women believe that female circumcision should be stopped
USAID Kenya & Gender-based Violence
In partnership with the Government of Kenya, USAID programs ensure:
• Government, civil society, religious leaders and community members work together to prevent and address gender-based violence
• Women are aware of their rights under the Sexual Offenses Act (2006)
• Victims and survivors of gender-based violence have access to quality health and legal services
• Women are equally included and engaged as participants and leaders in preventing conflict and building peace
• Women and girls are not exposed to gender-based violence before, during and after the 2013 Kenya presidential elections
Click here for more information about what USAID is doing around the world for the 16 Days of Activism Against Gender-based Violence.