Beyond the Survivor: The Impact of Conflict-Related Sexual Violence on Families of Survivors in Northern Uganda

The purpose of this project is to study how a woman’s experience of conflict-related sexual violence affects her family members, and how access to programs impacts the survivors’ recovery and post-conflict family relations.

The definition of conflict-related sexual violence used in this project accords with the most recent definition developed by the United Nations Security Council that defines it as “rape, sexual slavery, forced prostitution, forced pregnancy, enforced sterilization and other forms of sexual violence of comparable gravity perpetrated against women, men, girls or boys that is linked, directly or indirectly (temporally, geographically or causally) to a conflict. This link may be evident in the profile of the perpetrator; the profile of the victim; in a climate of impunity or State collapse; in the cross-border dimensions; and/or in violations of the terms of a ceasefire agreement.”

Through a focus on the post-conflict regions of Northern Uganda, this project will explore how families of women survivors of conflict-related sexual violence are affected by the survivor’s experiences and evaluate how programs in Northern Uganda respond to the needs of survivors and their family members.

This research project is led by Mahlet A. Woldetsadik, who is a doctoral fellow at the Pardee RAND Graduate School and an assistant policy analyst at the RAND Corporation in Santa Monica, California. She can be reached at mwoldets@rand.org.

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