The Role of Nursing in Preventing Violence against Women

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Sexual violence is the act of trying to obtain sex through coercion or force. Most female refugees have experienced sexual violence due to several factors. Owing to the breakdown of the family, most refugees lack families to stay with or protect them. They rely on themselves due to the displacement or death and this makes them easy targets (Stark et al., 2018). In addition, there is a lack of law enforcement and protective structures at the camps. Most camps where refugees settle lack police and laws to protect the victims. Therefore, the perpetrators take advantage as no action will be taken against them for perpetrating sexual violence.

The other reason for high sexual violence incidences amongst female refuges is the lack of a social structure. This is due to the dislodgment of most social places that act as a sanctuary to the women (Sampselle, 1991). This makes them vulnerable as they have no one to lean on or ask for help. Social places such as schools, places of worship, and social halls always act as safe places for women.

Some of the nursing actions that can be taken to reduce these statistics include having continuous health programs. Catering for the survivors by employing trained healthcare professionals to help them heal and teach them how to protect themselves against the perpetrators is vital (Vu et al., 2014). Similarly having the victims form a victims’ social help group where they can help each other and help sensitize other females in the camps who are not victims so that they can protect each other.

All nurses should also learn how to identify early signs of abuse or sexual violence and offer the person help. Being the first person an abused female sees, the nurse needs to give that person the advice and medical help they need. Furthermore, nurses can identify early signs of sexual violence hence help the person seek help from the authorities. By doing the above, nurses can help not only the victims but also prevent sexual violence against women in the camps.


Sampselle, C. M. (1991). The Role of Nursing in Preventing Violence against Women. Journal of Obstetric, Gynecologic & Neonatal Nursing, 20(6), 481-487. doi:10.1111/j.1552-6909.1991.tb01714.x

Stark, L., Asghar, K., Seff, I., Yu, G., Gessesse, T. T., Ward, L., . . . Falb, K. L. (2018). Preventing violence against refugee adolescent girls: Findings from a cluster randomized controlled trial in Ethiopia. BMJ Global Health, 3(5). doi:10.1136/bmjgh-2018-000825

World Refugee Day. (n.d.). Retrieved July 04, 2020, from Vu, A., Adam, A., Wirtz, A., Pham, K., Rubenstein, L., Glass, N., … & Singh, S. (2014). The prevalence of sexual violence among female refugees in complex humanitarian emergencies: a systematic review and meta-analy

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