‘They Call Me Warrior’: The Legacy of Conflict and the Struggle to End Sexual and Gender-based Violence in Sierra Leone

Click here for the full report: Conflict & ending SGBV in Sierra Leone_IDS

A relatively small country with just over six million people, Sierra Leone has been the focus of considerable public and policy attention because of the recent Ebola epidemic and, before that, the decade-long civil way. Given the concern with finding ways to ‘build Sierra Leone differently’ in the post-Ebola context (IDS 2015), this paper considers some of the legacies of the country’s history. It focuses on gender and the emergence of a dynamic network of actors that reveal not only the country’s history of violence but also its capacity for ‘rebuilding differently’ to foster resilience and create long-term social transformation.

The first section of the report traces the roots of violence in Sierra Leone and the emergence of a coalition of actors that seeks to respond to SGBV, focusing on our primary research partner, MAGE-SL. The second section outlines practical actions and limitations faced by these collective actors in their work to catalyse transformation to end SGBV and promote gender equality.