“The Teaching Struck Me Deep In My Heart”

“The Teaching Struck Me Deep In My Heart”

Publication info


In rural Rwanda, a man named Fidѐle joined one of CARE’s innovative programs addressing the violence that plagued his community. Fidѐle always dreamed of having a son. But, after his wife delivered three daughters, Fidѐle started to abuse her. Like many men in his community, Fidѐle blamed his wife for not giving him a male descendant.

Listen as Fidѐle explains how CARE helped him break the cycle violence in his own marriage and in those of his neighbors and friends.

Like Fidѐle’s wife, millions of women are at the greatest risk of experiencing violence in their own homes. Domestic violence most often goes unreported – and, in some societies, is not only accepted but expected as “normal” behavior.

CARE’s experience shows the importance of the involvement of men and boys in preventing – and stopping – violence against women and girls. Not only are men and boys largely the perpetrators of violence, but they are essential to achieving real and lasting progress because they play key roles in communities, governments and families. Since attitudes about gender are formed at an early age, internalized throughout childhood and adolescence, and passed from generation to generation, CARE pays special attention to boys and young men.

Our programs engage men and boys in violence prevention; sexual, reproductive and maternal health; and gender parity when it comes to making decisions for the home, carrying out chores and caring for the young, sick and elderly. The results can be life-changing. When men like Fidѐle change their violent behavior and treat their intimate partners as equals, they lead the way in creating a safer, more equitable and prosperous world for themselves, their family and their community.

Know the Facts:

  • In some countries, up to 7 in 10 women are beaten, raped, abused or mutilated.
  • 1 in 4 women who have experienced gender-based violence have been abused during pregnancy.
  • In many places, women subjected to marital rape and domestic violence have no legal recourse.

CARE is helping Fidѐle break the cycle violence in his own marriage and in his rural Rwandan community.


Engaging Men and Boys in the Prevention of Gender-Based Violence