Children’s Experiences of Violence: Evidence from Ethiopia, India, Peru and Vietnam

Kirrily Pells & Virginia Morrow - Ending Violence in Childhood Global Report 2017. Know Violence in Childhood.

This brief paper highlights some of Young Lives key findings on violence affecting children, exploring what children say about violence, how it affects them, and the key themes that emerges from a systematic analysis of the children’s accounts. Young Lives is a unique 15-year longitudinal study of children growing up in poverty in Ethiopia, India (in the states of Andhra Pradesh and Telangana), Peru and Vietnam. Young Lives research combines survey and qualitative methods, focussed on the causes and consequences of childhood poverty for children’s well-being (see Appendix for further details of Young Lives and methods). Young Lives is not a dedicated violence prevalence study. Therefore, it is notable that children’s experiences of violence emerged as widespread in Young Lives qualitative research and a matter of grave concern to children themselves. In this brief paper, the authors explore selected themes that have emerged from Young Lives published papers (see references): 1. the ways in which children experience multiple forms of violence occur across different settings; 2. how children’s experiences of and responses to violence are shaped by age and gender; 3. how violence reflects and reinforces discriminatory social and gender norms 4. how violence is a manifestation of a lack of rights and is widely normalised; and finally, 5. how poverty is a driver of violence affecting children.