Original Research

Awareness campaigns as survival tools in the fight against gender-based violence in peri-urban communities of Bulawayo in Zimbabwe

Glory Damba, Wilfred Lunga, Charles Musarurwa
Jàmbá: Journal of Disaster Risk Studies | Vol 5, No 2 | a83 | DOI: https://doi.org/10.4102/jamba.v5i2.83 | © 2013 Glory Damba, Wilfred Lunga, Charles Musarurwa | This work is licensed under CC Attribution 4.0
Submitted: 17 January 2013 | Published: 10 April 2013

About the author(s)

Glory Damba, Ministry of Women Affairs, Gender and Community Development, Zimbabwe
Wilfred Lunga, African Centre for Disaster Studies, North West University, South Africa
Charles Musarurwa, Department of Languages and Social Sciences Education, University of Botswana, Botswana


Most of Zimbabwe’s urban settlements owe their existence to mining activities; hence most peri-urban communities around Bulawayo, Zimbabwe’s second largest city, are mining communities. However, research in these mining communities has shown that there is little focus on the strengthening of community dynamics that help members to cope with the challenges associated with Gender-Based Violence. Psychosocial support rarely arrives in time to effectively cover gaps left by traditional coping strategies. This paper presents and discusses experiences and insights accumulated from awareness campaigns meant to sensitise people about the nature and scope of gender-based violence. This article is a culmination of focus group discussions, informal interviews and participant observation as efforts were made towards capacity building for community members’ abilities to identify forms of risky behaviour associated with gender-based violence, and the appropriate actions members could take should they find themselves in such situations. In short, this article discusses the conceptualisation of domestic and gender violence as a risk, forms of gender-based violence, the rationale behind campaigns to reduce the internalisation of gender-based violence, and challenges faced in inculcating behaviour change efforts.


domestic violence; women; prevention; awareness; health problems


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