Sexual and Gender Based Violence (SGBV)

It is never too late to report or seek help

What is Sexual and Gender Based Violence (SGBV)?

Physical and emotional violence—in the form of force, coercion, threats, and deception— against another because of their sex or gender is considered SGBV. While many victims and survivors are women and girls, men and boys can also suffer from SGBV.

Types of SGBV:

  • Rape: Unwanted, non-consensual penetration. This also includes any sexual activity with a child below age 18.
  • Sexual Assault: Any sexual threat or act conducted without consent, including within a marriage. This also includes any sexual activity with a child below age 18, female genital mutilation (FGM), sexual abuse and harassment, exploitation, and forced prostitution.
  • Physical assault: Threats or acts of physical harm, with or without weapons. This includes beating, punching, maiming, killing.
  • Forced Marriage: marriage against a person’s will.
  • Child Marriage: Any marriage of a child (below age 18), of any gender
  • Denial of resources, opportunities, or services: Social and economic isolation and denial of access to education, healthcare (including contraceptives), employment, and basic rights.
  • Psychological/emotional abuse: Infliction of mental or emotional pain, including threats of harm or practices that insult, degrade, humiliate, or isolate a person from their friends and family. These may also include verbal harassment, destruction of cherished things, unwanted attention, or menacing remarks, gestures or written words

These forms of violence may occur between family members or those in an intimate relationship. Perpetrators may be strangers, acquaintances, family members or those considered as family members, regardless of whether they live in the same household.

Services to address SGBV

UNHCR works in partnership with other stakeholders to address root causes and contributing factors of SGBV, as well as to provide quality survivor-centred case management, including counselling and referral to available multi-sectoral services, which include but are not limited to: 

  • Safe spaces for women, girls, and communities
  • Structured psychosocial services, including material assistance
  • Health services, including clinical management of rape
  • Legal services in the context of SGBV response
  • Livelihood opportunities
  • Interventions that empower persons at risk and survivors of SGBV and address harmful attitudes and social norms. 

Experiencing SGBV is never your fault!

If you are subjected to any of the above actions by anyone including your family members, please contact to UNHCR helpline 092 277 76 82 from 7am to 7pm.