Violence in schools and amongst school children is widespread and impacts educational attainment, health and wellbeing. However, schools also provide opportunities for preventing violence, learning about gender equality and respectful relationships, and even reducing violence at home and in future relationships. New evidence from rigorous evaluation of three projects under DFID’s What Works to Prevent Violence against Women and Girls Global Programme (What Works) shows the potential of some school-based interventions to prevent multiple forms of violence – in school, at home and in the community – even in very challenging settings.
Right to Play Pakistan designed and implemented a school-based programme that used sport and play to reduce peer violence and corporal punishment, improve mental health, and change social norms in support of gender equality and non-violence. The programme reached 8,000 children in 40 public schools, with an equal number of boys and girls benefitting. It was rigorously evaluated by Aga Khan University.
This Evidence Brief presents the findings from the end-line evaluation. These show significant reductions in both boys’ and girls’ perpetration and victimisation of peer violence, experience of corporal punishment both at home and in school, and witnessing of acts of domestic violence. Levels of depression and patriarchal gender attitudes have also improved. The positive results demonstrate the potential of investing in sports and play based learning in schools and communities to prevent violence.
12-year-old Mahnoor – clad in a simple blue and white uniform with the usual head-scarf -skipped home happily after a regular day at school in Hyderabad, Pakistan. With mundane thoughts of school and homework on her mind, she did not focus on the shadow closing in behind her. It was only when a rough hand grabbed her from behind the neck dragging her towards a deserted, dead-ended alley, does Mahnoor realize that she is being assaulted. Realizing the stranger’s ill-intent, Mahnoor snapped out of her reverie, and fought back. Kicking, biting, screaming – she continued her struggle eventually managing to break free from her assailant, and sprint home.
Read about an ordinary day for an extraordinary woman living in one of the world’s largest refugee camps.
February 26, 2018
My name is Miriam. I was born in Somalia. My family fled the war in 1992 when I was one year old, and I have lived in Dadaab refugee camp—one of the largest in the world—since then.
Now, I work for the International Rescue Committee. Every day, I work to protect women and girls from violence.
In Afghanistan, more than 50% of married women report experiencing emotional, physical and/or sexual violence from an intimate partner. Violence against women is associated with intergenerational effects such that the experience and perpetration of intimate partner violence is linked to individual childhood abuse. Furthermore, evidence suggests that children’s exposure to various forms of violence, such as family violence in the home and corporal punishment at school, are strongly linked to children’s perpetration of violence against their peers, suggesting that children learn and reproduce violent norms and practices from adults. In order to prevent violence against children and lay the foundations for a more peaceful society, Help the Children Afghanistan (HTAC) implemented a school-based peace education and community social norms change intervention reaching 2000 boys and 1500 girls.
This evidence brief presents the findings from an evaluation of the programme. The evaluation demonstrated that conducting peace education with children in schools, coupled with activities aimed at changing community social norms, can lead to a reduction in various forms of violence, including children’s peer violence, corporal punishment of children both at school and at home, and domestic violence against women at the household level.
An evaluation of gender-based violence case management services in the Dadaab refugee camps In the Dadaab refugee camps in north-eastern Kenya, the International Rescue Committee (IRC) and CARE International (CARE) have implemented programmes that aim to both respond to and prevent GBV. A cornerstone of this work has been to train refugees, known as refugee community workers, to deliver aspects of GBV prevention and response work in order to develop a broader implementation of traditional GBV outreach, community mobilisation, and case management. Between 2014 and 2017, research co-led by the London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine (LSHTM) and the African Population and Health Research Centre (APHRC), in collaboration with IRC and CARE, was conducted to assess this model and better understand its feasibility, acceptability, and influence among female survivors of GBV accessing care. This report presents the findings of that research.
Right to Play is a global organisation that uses transformative power of sport and play to educate and empower youth. This report indicated the importance of their work in Pakistan (143rd of 144 in the Gender Inequality Index) and outlines how a program of sports and play in Hyderabad is helping to prevent VAWG. Featuring a look at the activities, outreach and scope of the program, and its expected outcomes.
An overview of the work of What Works, including a look at the scale of the problem, the different manifestations of VAWG, its causes, and the role of food insecurity, gender attitudes, disability, and violence against children.
Is Right to Play effective in reducing peer victimisation in Pakistan and also in improving attitudes towards gender roles, and improving youth mental health and school performance? This informative brief includes methodology, findings regarding the relationship between disability and violence, and also the intersection of corporal punishment by teachers and peer violence, and makes policy recommendations.
Corboz, J., Hemat, O., Siddiq, W., & Jewkes, R. (2018). Children's peer violence perpetration and victimization: Prevalence and associated factors among school children in Afghanistan. PLoS one, 13(2), e0192768.