Violence against people committed based on gender is referred to as gender-based violence. Its roots are in harmful norms, power abuse, and gender inequality.
Gbadegesin Alawode, a Nigerian health practitioner, has developed an app called “VoiceIT”, which will allow survivors to report cases of abuse and connect with verified organizations or experts via mobile phones.
Alawode explained that VoiceIT is a reporting and referral digital platform designed for survivors to safely report and connect with verified organizations and experts in Africa via Web and App.
“The platform also aggregates and provides real-time AI-driven data and analytics to help strengthen response, improve service uptake, and evidence generation for policy and programme planning. It will also serve as a virtual community for survivors to speak up, own their voices, share their stories, and receive personalized support.” He said.
Alawode added that it had been launched on the Google Play store for Android with five features: “Report Case- allows users to timely report a case of abuse and upload evidence either in video or picture. Organizations- allows users to connect with verified and trained organizations in their community to respond to cases of abuse as soon as possible.
Experts- This feature connects users with trained and certified experts such as doctors, therapists, psychologists, counsellors, and lawyers. The Knowledge Hub allows users to access verified and fact-checked information on gender-based violence, HIV, sexual and reproductive health, consent, and other topics. Risk Assessment tools for HIV and GBV allow users to risk assess themselves based on a set of questions and receive feedback on whether they should go for an HIV test or GBV screening.
Alawode explained he decided to create the app when a friend called him in 2018 to ask how he could report a case of sexual abuse in his community.
“Despite having his phone and internet, he couldn’t find any reliable platform for reporting and referring cases,” he explained.
It is excellent news that we now have a platform where people can speak up and report such cases without fear of repercussions. Individuals across the country are encouraged to use the app if they are victims of gender-based violence and have nowhere else to turn.