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Safety, Trust, and Disclosure: A qualitative examination of violence against refugee adolescents in Kiziba Camp, Rwanda

Refugee adolescents face increased vulnerability to child protection risks including abuse, neglect, violence, and exploitation. The aim of this qualitative study was to examine the nature of violence against adolescents in Kiziba Camp, Rwanda, using an ecological framework to analyze the factors that influence protection risks and abuse disclosure across multiple system levels. Results show that protection mechanisms and reporting pathways were underutilized as caregivers and adolescents expressed concern over the shame, embarrassment, and social rejection that characterized formal disclosure in Kiziba, often rooted in restrictive and inequitable gender norms. These findings suggest that efforts at child protection should be multi-faceted and address structural aspects of risk; household levels of communication and trust; and societal norms that deter abuse reporting.

Laura Gauer Bermudeza, Lauren Parks, Sarah R.Meyer, Liberata Muhorakeye, Lindsay Stark
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Journal article - abstract only
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