Gender-based violence (GBV) is pervasive throughout South Sudan. The renewed fighting in 2016 has only worsened the deep suffering and humanitarian needs of civilians, with conflict seriously exacerbating gendered violence. GBV has devastating impacts, resulting in long-term physical, psychological and social traumas that can affect individuals, families and communities for decades. The effects of such violence are further compounded by lack of access to appropriate medical and psychological support, as well as a lack of appropriate security and justice.
Reliable data on GBV in South Sudan is scarce. Design of appropriate and context-specific interventions is difficult in the absence of reliable information on the nature and scope of GBV and the effect on HIV transmission. To help understand the problem of GBV in South Sudan, the International Organization for Migration (IOM), with the help of its national and international partners, undertook a large-scale study of the knowledge, attitudes and practices related to GBV in the country. The study aimed to collect baseline information across a number of states on GBV, sexual and reproductive health, HIV and gender norms in emergency settings among key populations of humanitarian concern, including internally displaced persons in protection of civilian sites, host communities and female sex workers.