A one stop gender based violence (GBV) center has been opened at Chipinge District Hospital to deal with GBV cases which have been on the increase in the district and countrywide.

GBV is the most extreme expression of unequal gender relations in society and a violation of human rights as well as a major hindrance to the achievement of gender equality.

The Permanent Secretary in the Ministry of Women Affairs, Gender and Community Development, Mrs Sibusisiwe Zembe, who read a speech on behalf of Minister Sithembiso Nyoni, said the initiative is part of efforts to improve GBV prevention and response strategies, with the one stop centre on GBV in Chipinge being the fourth in the country.

“There are shocking statistics of teen pregnancies and child marriages despite various interventions, hence the need for stakeholders to work together to end this scourge,” she said.

In his speech on behalf of the Minister of State for Manicaland Province, Cde Monica Mutsvangwa, Mr Terrence Machocho, who is the Deputy Director in the Minister’s office, said the official opening of Chipinge one stop centre for adults and child survivors of GBV will help reduce the cases which currently average 28.8 percent. 

“It pains me to note that Zimbabwe is characterised by a high prevalence rate of GBV with an average of 28.8 percent of women and girls aged between 15 to 49 years having experienced physical and sexual violence,” he said.

FACT Executive Director, Mrs Getrude Shumba said the one stop centre is part of strong GBV prevention and response packages after a realisation that only 2.7 percent of survivors of GBV access legal, health, counseling or other support services.

The GBV one stop centre allows for survivors to access medical services, psychological support and legal assistance at the district hospital.