Hiding in Plain Sight: GBV and Working with Men and Boys

Yeabsira Bogale, a member of MenEngage Africa's Youth Alliance, writes on the pervasiveness of violence against women in our society.

“Why is it critical to work with men and boys (to address gender-based violence)? Men may be the majority of the perpetrators, but we have a larger segment of men who do not condone this violence but are silent about it, and we often miss out on the opportunity to engage them. There is a spectrum of change that extends from men who are hostile or opposed to our movement, to those who are hesitant to engage, all the way up to the ones who become active leaders and agents of change. There are also a lot of repeat-offenders. That means, we cannot design a preventative intervention without equally focusing on and working with the perpetrators”.

“The situation begs us to take a closer look at the factors behind the harmful aspects of masculinities and patriarchal norms which later evolve into this dangerous reality. There is also growing recognition and evidence-base which highlights the strategy of working with men and boys as the missing link in our strive to achieve gender-equality”, writes Yeabsira Bogale, MenEngage Africa‘s Youth Alliance member.

She wrote this piece as she was participating in the recent annual general meeting of the MenEngage Africa alliance, which took place in Harare, Zimbabwe, from 26 – 27 November 2015.

Read her full article here.