• Working Hours - Mon - Thu: 8:00 - 17:00; Fri: 8:00 - 14:00
What are you looking for?

IHVN Sensitizes FCT Communities on Gender-Based Violence

The Institute of Human Virology Nigeria (IHVN) has sensitized Iddo Padda and Gwagwa communities in the Federal Capital Territory on gender-based violence(GBV).
The sensitization program involved advocacy to community leaders, a road walk within the community market and health checks.

IHVN Senior Program Officer Prevention, Care and Treatment, Mrs. Derby Collins-Kalu says that the Institute in collaboration with New Hope Agency, a community-based organization, organized the activity in these communities to prevent GBV and rape.

“The program reports we are getting from the community shows a high rate of gender-based violence, especially rape for minors. We work with health facilities to sensitize women during immunization. Rape is the most common in these communities. We presented these findings to the community leaders. The sensitization activity is to tell the people what is happening in their community and stimulate behaviour change in the areas of rape. We also want to educate people about rape and to tell them the services available to someone who has been raped in the health care center.”

Mrs, Collins-Kalu explains that timely presentation of  persons who experience rape in health facilities makes the difference.  

“This event is part of a broader effort to sensitize the community about the realities of  GBV.. IHVN has been educating residents on recognizing signs of rape, understanding the available care pathways, and emphasizing the importance of timely medical intervention. Immediate medical attention is critical to prevent the transmission of HIV, manage potential pregnancies, address sexually transmitted diseases, and mitigate the emotional trauma associated with rape.”

New Hope Agency GBV Program Manager, Ifeoma Okonkwo says that “Our collaboration with IHVN has been instrumental in bringing awareness to the community. Engaging with the public has brought a noticeable increase in community participation and willingness to discuss GBV issues.”

Mrs Okonkwo lamented the culture of silence in the society that makes people hesitant to speak about GBV. .

“Most of the cultures are very abusive, I also believe that if we can sensitize our communities, they will speak out.”

Women who received testing services during the sensitization program expressed appreciation for the activity. 22-year-old housewife, Sekinah Ilasu says, “I am grateful for this initiative to tell women to speak up about Gender Based Violence because a lot of people in our community today are facing violence from their husbands and they are afraid to speak up because it will only make the situation worst.”

Another participant, a petty trader, Zainab Daro, called for participation of men in sensitization programs too.  “I wish our husbands were here to hear this so that those who beat their wives can know that it is bad and stop,”