While gender-based violence (GBV) is not a problem unique to Africa, there is little doubt that the extent of the problem persists more severely on the continent than elsewhere in the world. The World Health Organization (WHO) reports that, in 2013, 35% of women worldwide had experienced either physical or sexual violence in their lifetimes. In contrast, 45.6% of women 15 years and older in Africa have experienced the same.
This high incidence of GBV in Africa can be correlated to low levels of education, exposure to violence elsewhere, patriarchal systems, attitudes accepting of violence and gender inequality, and low access to information. In societies where justice is seldom achieved, knowledge of women’s rights is limited, and exposure to violence is consistent the task of reducing GBV remains of paramount importance.