Help-Seeking Behavior of Female Victims of Intimate Partner Violence in Ghana: The Role of Trust and Perceived Risk of Injury
Although several studies have investigated the socio-cultural underpinnings of intimate partner violence (IPV) in Ghana, few explore the help-seeking behavior of the victims. This study examined the help-seeking behavior of female victims of IPV in Ghana. Specifically, it explored the role of perceived risk of injury and trust in determining whether and where victims seek help and their likelihood of seeking help in the event of future abuse. The study used nationally representative cross-sectional data (N = 1689) and logit regression techniques to address these research objectives. The majority of respondents who had suffered IPV had not sought help after experiencing violence. However, of these, a substantial proportion said they would do so in the future. Respondents with high perceived risk of injury from physical and emotional violence were significantly more likely to seek help from both formal and informal support networks than those who saw themselves at no risk. Those with high levels of trust in formal and informal institutions were more likely to seek help from these networks. Compared to those who did not, respondents who thought IPV should be kept private were less likely to seek help, especially in future abuse. Finding suggest policy makers should educate women about IPV, especially their risk of violence.
KeywordsGhana Help-seeking Trust Risk perception Intimate partner violence
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