The country is one of the poorest in the world, despite being ranked as one of the world's top ten countries that are rich in minerals. It also holds one of the highest records of violence against women and girls, in the West African sub-region. The ten years of rebel war officially accounts for nearly 600,000 women and girls violated during this senseless destructive civil conflict that ended in 2002. Despite the end of the war, its effects have contributed largely to the escalation of violence and abuse against women.
Men's Association for Gender Equality-Sierrra Leone (MAGE-SL) is a non-profit and a network of male-led organisations working towards the promotion of gender equality through advocacy, dialogue and raising awareness on gender policies, women's rights and empowerment in Sierra Leone.
What do they do
The Association strives to circumvent the traditional academic approach to gender promotion and advocacy by adopting a bottom-up approach with grassroots oriented strategies from within the family settings of Sierra Leone. The ten years rebel war, which officially ended in 2002, contributed towards the escalation of violence and abuse against women. Rape in particular was systematically used in the war by all warring factions. Until 2004 rape was a legal crime in Sierra Leone. Traditionally, women in many parts of Sierra Leone are considered inferior to men. Social structures in these communities such as the legal system of the local community, including family and friends, the educational system, mass media, religion and culture have contributed in many ways to the violent behaviour of men against women.