Very little is known about the root causes of childhood violence, including sexual violence, in Zanzibar, or which preventative strategies may prove appropriate. Save the Children UK and Save the Children Tanzania engaged the LSHTM in early 2015 to conduct research to support Save the Children’s programming to address violence against children in this context. Our overall research endeavour consists of a series of phases. The first phase, which has already been conducted, was a scoping phase to learn more about violence in Zanzibar from published literature and by speaking to key stakeholders on the island.
We have just completed the second phase, which involved in-depth anthropological research to explore the context of violence against children, and possibilities for intervention. We conducted qualitative research with different groups of people — children, parents, school staff, madrassa (Islamic religious school) teachers, community members and community leaders. Early findings suggest that madrassa schools are a key site where violence against children occurs, and that staff and other stakeholders would appreciate support to help them address sexual and other violence against children.
Our next phase will involve further qualitative and survey work to understand patterns of violence in madrassa schools, and to inform development of a tailored intervention to prevent violence in madrassas.
- Principal Investigator: Dr Karen Devries
- Principal Investigator: Dr Shelley Lees
- Co-Investigator: Louise Knight
- Research Fellow: Heidi Grundlingh
This study is ongoing
Read an overview of our research in this field.
Image: Adolescents participating in a user group meeting, with Save the Children facilitator on the right, Stone Town, Zanzibar. Image credit: Shelley Lees, London School of Hygiene & Tropical Medicine