Mozambique: Six years into the conflict, women and girls in Cabo Delgado are still bearing the brunt of the crisis

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Cabo Delgado, a province in northern Mozambique, has been plagued by armed conflict since October 2017. This has resulted in the displacement of over a million people, who have experienced severe hardship, as they were forced to flee their homes as a result of insurgent activity. Women and girls bore the brunt of this humanitarian emergency, with their rights, safety, and future prospects gravely affected.

“The humanitarian situation in Cabo Delgado, while significantly improved, continues to impact the lives of women and children who lost access to education, healthcare, and economic opportunities and faced increased risks of violence,” said Christine Beasley, CARE International Mozambique Country Director.

Most of the people who fled violence in northern districts settled temporarily in host communities or displacement camps in the southern part of the province. A CARE Gender Report found that post-traumatic stress, economic hardship, repeated displacement, and uncertainty about the future all have contributed to an increased risk of intimate partner violence for women. According to the latest Humanitarian Response Plan, which is only 35.2% funded, protection and education programs are the least funded sectors, at 18.7% and 13.6% respectively.

Community members still carry the psychological trauma of the violence they experienced and witnessed as they fled from their homes. Amina, who lives in one of the 99 displacement sites, shared her account of what she saw the day the conflict started: “When the combatants entered our village, they burned houses, killed people, and kidnapped others, including my two daughters.” Sadly, her experience is not uncommon, as many need ongoing support to recover and rebuild their lives after severe trauma.

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