- 18-35 year olds are actively engaged with social issues and want to take a stand
- Young people consider sexual violence a major humanitarian crisis
- SGBV is a major emergency in South Africa and a medical emergency for survivors
- Almost of half of young people believe that someone who has experienced sexual violence should report the incident to police before receiving medical care
- Requiring someone who has experienced sexual violence to report to police may discourage them from accessing medical and psychological care
- MSF calls on young people to take a stand to change perceptions and put the medical and psychological needs of survivors at the centre of the SGBV response
In August and September, Doctors Without Borders (MSF) Southern Africa and Meraki Research surveyed over 1000 young people in South Africa between the ages of 18 and 35.
The results clearly show that young people in South Africa have strong opinions around healthcare issues and want to take a stand and speak out about these issues. One of the key healthcare issues for young people is sexual and gender-based violence.
Young people in South Africa Actively Engage with Social and Political Issues
3 out of 4 young people surveyed actively follow what is happening in the news and two thirds say they vote in every election. This is higher for 26-35 year-olds, with 80% saying they follow news and 74% saying they vote in every election.
A smaller percentage, said they get involved in protests for a better life for all (1 in 5), participate in student or local government (18%) or are members of political parties (17%).
18-35 year olds Want to Take a Stand
- 89% or nearly 9 in 10 respondents believed in speaking out against injustice.
- 86% agreed with the statement “I cannot stand by and do nothing when someone else is suffering”.
- ¾ believe it is their responsibility to help others.
Young people are particularly likely to take a stand when they see the problem as their responsibility, when they are directly affected or when they see others who cannot help themselves/nothing is being done.
"I cannot watch someone's rights or my rights being neglected or violated. I believe there's a humanitarian in everyone," said Luvuyo Titi, Male, 26, Eastern Cape
"When people are being victimized foremost for who they are. I fight for a world that lets humans be humans regardless of societal ideologies. Humans are humans and each and every one knows what's best for them." Female, 18-25, Gauteng, anonymous.