Youth and Gender Based Violence in Dandora

By Andrew Myendo

Gender Based Violence (GBV) in Dandora has increased for the past few months, leaving many injured physically or mentally. Many parents have found the going getting tough especially when Covid-19 hit the country and the economy went down south. 

Most of the residents have witnessed GBV either in their own families or their neighbours’ homes, but have no idea how to deal with it or how to report the violence.

On the fourth of December, the Dandora Community Justice Centre and Community Education and Empowerment Centre held a focus group discussion with 30 youth aged between 25yrs and 35yrs to understand and try to give hope to those who are experiencing gender based violence in their homes. The participants were separated into two different groups based on their gender, where they were to discuss with the aim of gaining in-depth understanding of the matter.

The fact that a lot of families here in Dandora go through Gender Based Violence (GBV)  in silence came out strongly during the focus group discussion. A number of the participants are living together as husband and wife with children and they do not see or understand the signs of gender based violence that they face or may face while living together. It is evident that the GBV vice is rampant in Dandora and the community needs to be educated. At one point, emotions ran high as each group presented their findings and tried to accuse each other of being the reason gender based violence is rampant here in Dandora.

A majority complained that the environment is one of the factors that contribute to the vice. A number of men have neglected their families and when they are asked to be responsible,  turn violent due to being  under the influence of drugs. The most common drugs they use are alcohol, bang and khat{muguka}. They even turn to their children and this affects them psychologically. The other aspect that came from the forum is that of economic status between spouses who leave together.

Women claimed that they are most affected when their husbands are the soul bread winners because they have to ask for money when they want to buy anything in the house. When he does not have anything and she keeps on nagging, the man ends up beating her and sometimes injuring her. What I observed to be lacking is communication between spouses and agreeing on what one should do.

The other aspect that they brought up was that Dandora is a cosmopolitan area and there are different cultures and beliefs, some of which have tolerance for things such as beating of mostly wives. At Dandora Community Justice Centre, hardly a day passes without a case of gender based violence being reported. 

There is a need to have more awareness forums to sensitize the community on how to handle the stress that comes especially during this pandemic of Coronavirus and ways for amicable dispute resolution.


Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *