April 19, 2024

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Amb. Nkulikiyinka calls for collaboration in addressing GBV at the workplace

The Chief Executive Officer of Rwanda Cooperation Initiative (RCI), Amb. Nkulikiyinka Christine has highlighted that addressing Gender-Based Violence (GBV) requires sustained effort and collaboration across various sectors and stakeholders, as it remains one of the most pressing challenges that societies are facing.

She made these remarks during the opening of workshop on the “Psychological Dimension of Gender Based Violence and personal and organizational productivity”, which took place in Kigali, on the 27th March 2024.

The workshop was organized by Rwanda Cooperation Initiative (RCI) in collaboration with CIFAL Kigali (International Training Centre for Authorities and Leaders). CIFAL centers are affiliated with the United Nations Institute for Training and Research (UNITAR), and they specialize in providing training and capacity-building programs for government officials, local authorities, and other stakeholders to address various global challenges. 

The workshop has brought together RCI Staff, staff from the sister institutions: Ministry of Gender and Family Promotion (MIGEPROF), National Public Service Commission (NPSC) among other institutions with keen interests of establishing the lingering psychological effects of GVB on personal and organizational productivity.

“This workshop serves as a platform for us to delve into the complex layers of the psychological impact that gender-based violence inflicts, extending far beyond just the individuals directly affected. Indeed, the repercussions of such violence rebound through families, communities, and even at the professional level”, Amb. Nkulikiyinka noted.

“It is fitting that we organize this event during March, the International Women’s Month, as GBV remains one of the most pressing challenges facing our societies, both nationally and globally. We aim to underscore the importance of addressing GBV comprehensively and urgently. It requires sustained effort and collaboration across various sectors and stakeholders”, she added.

Jane Abatoni Gatete, Executive Secretary of ARCT RUHUKA, highlighted that the effects of GBV to mental health are very huge because sometimes one can’t believe how it came depending on the type of violence that occurred.

“It affects the way of thinking, seeing things, It normally causes mental health issues with symptoms including depression, anxiety, anger, isolation and keeping quiet and there is lack of confidence and self-esteem.” she explained.

Mitali Lydia, Advisor of the Board of Gender Monitoring Office, also noted that Gender-based violence is a serious concern at the working place where victims cannot even have good productivity.

“It can cause someone to be afraid to go to work due to what he/she encounters there. When a person is a victim he/she cannot produce as expected because he or she is unsafe to work in an unsafe environment.” Mitali explained

For Kabalisa Gasper, Study visit and training manager at RCI, “this workshop was insightful.”

He said: “GBV at working place exists.”

“The Transparency International Report of 2022 too justifies it. Awareness raising is needed because some people don’t know that they are offenders or victims.” he added.

“In the recruitment process, there are many reports that some people claim they are deprived of the jobs due to sexual based corruption. We were lucky to be shared prevention measures and the way we can report GBV. Personally, this workshop was insightful not only at working place but also at home,” he adds.

According to the Rwanda’s Demographic and Health Survey report published by the National Institute of Statistics (2019/20); 37% of women and girls who are aged between 15-49, had experienced physical or sexual, or psychological violence.

The corresponding proportions among men are 30%. The same report indicated that 46% of ever-married women and 18% of ever-married men have experienced spousal, physical, sexual, or emotional violence.

Although not as widespread, violence against men exists in Rwanda, and male victims should not be ignored. At least 20% of men are the ones who report it compared to 80% of women.

Dr Willy Mugenzi Chief Operations Officer/RCI (Right); Flora Ufitinema/RWAMREC; Mitali Lydia/GMO; Abatoni Jane/ARCT-RUHUKA
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