Ghana | Gender Studies and Human Rights Documentation Centre
The COMBAT model developed over a decade ago by the Gender Centre as part of a rural response to VAWG has been implemented in over 20 communities in different regions of Ghana. Community Based Action Teams (COMBAT), with equal representation of men and women, will be selected and trained on types, causes and impact of VAW, family laws, conflict resolution, advocacy and counselling.
Ogum-Alangea, D., Addo-Lartey, A., Chirwa, E., Sikweyiya, Y., Coker-Appiah, D., Jewkes, R., & Adanu, R. (2019). Evaluation of the Rural Response System (RRS) to Prevent Violence Against Women and Girls in Ghana.
Globally, activists and researchers have pointed to the contribution of harmful alcohol and substance use conditions to the occurrence and severity of intimate partner violence (IPV). There has been much debate over the relationship and whether it is truly causal. To date, there has been limited evidence about whether interventions to prevent harmful alcohol use and treat common mental health problems have an impact on IPV outcomes, and whether gender-transformative interventions that seek to prevent IPV can reduce harmful alcohol use and improve mental health. Available evidence on these associations has largely been from the global North. DFID’s What Works to Prevent Violence Against Women and Girls Global programme (What Works) has generated new evidence on these associations from evaluations of IPV prevention interventions in a range of settings in the global South, including peri-urban Zambia, rural Rwanda and Ghana, and urban informal settlements in South Africa, with promising findings for IPV prevention.
This brief presents the evaluation findings of the Rural Response System’s community mobilisation and social norms change intervention tested under the What Works to Prevent Violence Against Women and Girls programme. It is intended to inform the work of ministries, departments and agencies (MDAs), like-minded local NGOs for women and children, leaders in the broader community, and donors working to prevent violence against women and girls (VAWG) in Ghana.
Violence against women and girls (VAWG) is driven in part by gender attitudes, norms on gender inequality and the acceptability of violence, which are socially reproduced and shared. Women’s rights organizations across the global south have dedicated themselves to challenging these. Early evaluations of work they have championed has shown that sufficiently equipped community volunteers, guided in a long-term structured programme, can enable widespread diffusion of new ideas on gender and VAWG and ultimately achieve changes in harmful attitudes and norms across communities.
DFID’s What Works to Prevent Violence against Women and Girls Global Programme (What Works) has generated new evidence on the effect of these interventions in a range of settings – from rural areas and small towns of the Eastern Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC), Ghana, Rwanda, Nepal, to urban informal settlements in South Africa. Rigorous evaluations have shown the potential for preventing VAWG through multi-year, intensive change interventions with welltrained and supported community action teams, that purposefully engage both women and men to effect change.
Violence against women and girls (VAWG) is a widely recognised human rights violation with serious consequences for the health and well-being of women, with ramifications for households, businesses, communities and society overall. Even though violence against women is widely accepted as a fundamental human right and public health issue, its wider impact on development is being recognised only recently. There are only few studies that estimate the costs of VAWG.
It is well established that violence against women and girls (VAWG) is a human rights violation and public health issue. Worldwide, one in three women report experiencing some form of physical and/or sexual violence, predominantly perpetrated by a partner or ex-partner, over their lifetime (WHO 2013). More recently, there is a growing recognition of the wider economic and social costs of VAWG for individuals, the community, businesses, society and the economy.
Alvarado, G., Fenny, A. P., Dakey, S., Mueller, J. L., O’Brien-Milne, L., Crentsil, A. O., ... & Schwenke, C. (2018). The health-related impacts and costs of violence against women and girls on survivors, households and communities in Ghana. Journal of public health in Africa, 9(2).
This report provides a summary of the key ndings of the What Works to Prevent Violence: Economic and Social Costs project from Ghana. It also provides an overview of the costs of violence against women and girls (VAWG) to individuals, households, businesses and the economy. Findings show the heavy drag that VAWG imposes on wellbeing and economic productivity, and the need to invest urgently in scaling up efforts to prevent violence.