• 66 Kindon Rd, Robertsham, Johannesburg South, 2091
  • (+27) 11 083 5522
  • info@akeela.org.za
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  • (+27) 11 083 5522
  • info@akeela.org.za


Gender-based violence

Gender-based violence (GBV) is a profound and widespread problem in South Africa, impacting on almost every aspect of life. GBV (which disproportionately affects women and girls) is systemic, and deeply entrenched in institutions, cultures and traditions in South Africa.

GBV occurs as a result of normative role expectations and unequal power relationships between genders in a society.

GBV can be physical, sexual, emotional, financial or structural, and can be perpetrated by intimate partners, acquaintances, strangers and institutions. Most acts of interpersonal gender-based violence are committed by men against women, and the man perpetrating the violence is often known by the woman, such as a partner or family member.


Sizeable literature now links GBV and HIV infection. Sexual violence can lead to HIV infection directly, as trauma increases the risk of transmission. More importantly, GBV increases HIV risk indirectly.

Victims of childhood sexual abuse are more likely to be HIV positive, and to have high risk behaviours. GBV perpetrators are at risk of HIV infection, as their victims have often been victimised before and have a high risk of infection. Including perpetrators and victims, perhaps one third of the southern African population is involved in the GBV-HIV dynamic.

The inter-connections between Gender-Based Violence (GBV) and HIV, are now widely acknowledged both by the scientific community and development practitioners. Since HIV and AIDS emerged over 25 years ago, the percentage of HIV- positive women and girls within the general population of HIV- positive people has increased globally.

What We Do

Akeela Foundation is all about starting conversations and making your voice heard about any change you want to see, from change in your community, change at school or work, to any type of change you’d like to see around the world.

The more we speak out against gender-based violence, gender inequality, discrimination, bullying or harassment, the more we encourage ourselves and those around us not to just be bystanders but to actively fight it.

Akeela Foundation uplift HIV prevention policy to recognise the direct and indirect implications of GBV for HIV prevention, the importance of perpetrator dynamics, and that reduction of GBV should be part of HIV prevention programmes. Effective interventions are likely to include a structural component, and a GBV awareness component.

Prevention and Response

Our approaches to addressing GBV can be divided into response and prevention. Response approach aim to support and help survivors of violence in a variety of ways.

Prevention initiatives look at how GBV can be prevented from happening. Response services can in turn contribute towards preventing violence from occurring or reoccurring.

Much of our effort in South Africa has been focused on response. However – our response efforts need to be supported and complemented by prevention programming and policy development. By addressing the underlying, interlinked causes of GBV, we can work towards preventing it from happening in the first place.

Other Services

1. School based HIV and Violence Prevention programme

  • HIV/AIDS awareness programme
  • Bullying awareness programme
  • Interface of HIV and GBV
  • Date Rape campaign
  • SRH information Sessions
  • Peer educator workshop
    • 2. Prevention Services in the community

      • Community mobilisation and norms change workshops
      • Door to door campaigns on HIV and GBV
      • SRH information Sessions
        • 3. Support groups

          • Girls Club
          • Parenting Skills
            • 4. Condom distribution
              5. Providing social security through linking beneficiaries of this programme with other Akeela Projects and stakeholder referrals.

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    Many of our operations are in underdeveloped and developing economies where poverty, unemployment, illiteracy, environmental degradation and diseases such as HIV/AIDS. TB and COVID-19 are often endemic. Our coordinated thematic research in socio-economic assessment gives us an added advantage to identify and manage the operation’s social and economic effects. The thematic research involves; Profiling surrounding communities, Engaging with local interest groups to identify perceived impacts, Produce management plans, Publication of reports that provide the basis of the on-going relationships within the community, and finally Monitoring, and Evaluation.