Exploring The Gender Based Violence Experiences of Women In Mathare Slum During The Covid-19 Era.

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School of Communication, Daystar University


ABSTRACT Gender Based Violence is a criminal offense and a moral indignation as provided in the Kenyan Penal Code, the Sexual Offences Act 2006 and the Constitution 2010. GBV also contributes to health problems which ultimately translate into social and economic burdens for society members and the Government. It therefore impedes the achievement of developmental goals, for instance, in the context of the sustainable development goals and Kenya’s Vision 2030. This study explored the gender-based violence experiences of women in Mathare slum during COVID-19 era. The research objectives investigated are i) to find out the dimensions and types of gender-based violence experienced by women in Mathare slum during COVID-19 pandemic, ii) to establish the socio-cultural factors influencing gender-based violence in Mathare slum during the pandemic, and iii) to find out the barriers to reporting and assessing support for gender-based violence victims in Mathare slum during the pandemic. The investigated phenomenon was theoretically informed by the socio-ecological model and the culture-centered approach. The study adopted an exploratory research design and purposive sampling technique. Data was collected using interviews. The thematic analysis approach was used for analysis of the interview data. The study found that GBV is experienced by both men and women in Mathare but affects the latter more. GBV manifests in different forms: physical violence, from beatings to slapping, was shockingly common and often normalized within the households; emotional abuse, sexual abuse, economic enslavement, and harmful traditional practices. Cultural factors, social factors and economic factors fueled gender-based violence against women who live in Mathare slums during the pandemic. The study, therefore, concludes that while many traditional practices that degrade women are slowly dying due to modern ways of life, gender-based violence against women in Mathare slums seems to have defied the process. The emergence of grassroot initiatives in Mathare slum creates safe spaces for victims to share their stories and connect with others, fostering networks of support. The bravery of women in the programs encourages men to join the network and to support advocacy campaigns aimed to eliminate or reduce


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Gender Based Violence, Women, Mathare Slum, Covid-19


Kimani, J, N,. (2023, Thesis). Exploring The Gender Based Violence Experiences of Women In Mathare Slum During The Covid-19 Era. School of Communication, Daystar University