The relationship of sexual and gender-based violence to sexual-risk behaviour among refugee women in Sub-Saharan Africa

World Health Popul. 2007 Apr;9(2):26-37. doi: 10.12927/whp.2007.18957.


This study utilized the reformulated theory of learned helplessness to investigate the relationships of sexual and gender-based violence (SGBV), learned helplessness, depression and sexual-risk behaviours among refugee women in a camp setting in Botswana. Simultaneous multiple regression analysis showed that past SGBV predicts current sexual-risk behaviour (F = 2.018; p < .011). Although the hypothesized mediating roles of learned helplessness and depression on the relationship between past SGBV and current sexual-risk behaviour were not supported, 55% of participants experienced learned helplessness and 90% were depressed.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Africa South of the Sahara
  • Battered Women / psychology*
  • Cross-Sectional Studies
  • Depression / psychology*
  • Female
  • Helplessness, Learned*
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Rape*
  • Refugees / psychology*
  • Sexual Behavior / ethnology
  • Sexual Behavior / psychology*