The newly established Gender-Based Violence(GBV) One Stop Centre (OSC) was launched on 24 June 2020, in Meheba Resettlement Scheme, Kalumbila District, North Western Province, as an initiative to address the third pillar focusing on advancing social cohesion under the Promoting Human Security Through Sustainable Resettlement Programme.
At the launch, the Guest of Honor, Mr. Robinson Kalota, Kalumbila District Commissioner expressed his delight on behalf of Government, highlighting the difficult path in addressing areas of GBV and other vulnerabilities in recent years, which has been eased with the launch of GBV One Stop Centre.
He highlighted the importance of the lead coordination role of UNDP and the support from the Japanese Government towards the development of the resettlement areas, “a 2017 GBV study conducted by the Joint UN Programme on GBV amongst the refugee and host communities found heightened vulnerability to GBV as well as to sexual exploitation and abuse, especially amongst the refugee populations. While health clinics do exist in the resettlement areas of Meheba, they serve to primarily respond to the primary health care needs of the migrant and host communities and no measures have until now been put in place to strengthen GBV response for the populace.”
The GBV One Stop Centre functions as a key node for provision of comprehensive support against gender-based violence to protect the diverse community in Meheba Resettlement Scheme and surrounding areas, comprising Angolans, Congolese, Rwandese and Zambians.
Meheba Resettlement Scheme, like many other communities in Zambia, have experienced challenges with the availability and coordination of GBV services. Despite the efforts by line ministries of the Government, such as the Department of Resettlement, Office of the Vice President, and other stakeholders to respond to GBV, the area has continued to record an increase in the incidences of GBV, especially violence against women and a lack of coordination to manage GBV survivors, which spurred the establishment of the Center.
Development of the Centre is in line with the 7th National Development Plan (2017 – 2021) that emphasizes an integrated and multi-sectoral approach in all areas of social and economic development, as well as the principle of “leaving no one behind”. This model of response is multi-faceted and comprehensive and combines a package of services to GBV survivors within reach. The key stakeholders involved in the provision and coordination of services to GBV survivors include the Zambia Police Service, Ministries of Health, Social Welfare, Community Development, as well as civic and traditional Leaders, working together to provide any array of services including health, legal, justice, counselling, psychosocial support, protection and long term prevention of recurrence of GBV to survivors.
Mr. Andrew Banda, Director, Department of Resettlement, Office of the Vice President, expressed his gratitude to the financial contribution of the Government and People of Japan as well as the technical support of IOM for the instrumental training of staff for the centers and the rehabilitation of the physical infrastructure.
The GBV One Stop Centre, established at a cost of USD 75,000 will provide multidisciplinary GBV services to survivors and will be used as a Centre for education in GBV and data management. Subsequently, this will lead to a better understanding the realities of GBV and promote the establishment of a GBV free society.
A second GBV OSC was also established and equipped in Mayukwayukwa Resettlement Scheme, and the facility was handed over to the District Health Director during a low key administrative ceremony on 27 March 2020, in recognition of the COVID 19 containment measures.