Since the beginning of lockdown in March, the number of gender-based violence cases in my community has increased exponentially. At the start of the outbreak, many people lost their jobs due to widespread retrenchments. Food shortages followed in quick succession since most breadwinners were out of jobs and got stuck at home.
Children are no longer going to schools due to food shortages since they cannot walk long distances to school on empty stomachs. Poverty and food shortages are resulting in families having conflicts. In addition to the pandemic, the lack of education on the prevention of gender-based violence is making matters worse.
This situation has heightened the burden of violence against women and girls. Marriages have been broken, child abandonment is on the rise, so too are child marriages. The government and other non-governmental organizations should help in the fight to reduce GBV during this Covid-19 pandemic otherwise, the consequences will be devastating.