Healing from violence: An action research project among survivors of Gukurahundi, Zimbabwe
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Between 1983 and 1987, an estimated 20 000 people from Matebeleland and parts of Midlands Province in Zimbabwe were killed by Zimbabwean government forces in an operation code named Gukurahundi. Since that time no official apology, justice, reparations or any form of healing process has been offered by the government which was responsible for these atrocities. The question that this research project seeks to answer is whether the survivors of Gukurahundi can heal themselves? Using a participatory action research approach, the research sheds some light on what communities can do on their own to deal with the wounds of their members. It finds that through actions such as creating safe and empathetic spaces for storytelling, group-based healing workshops and other psychosocial approaches, it is possible for traumatised individuals and communities to attain a measure of relief from their emotional and psychological wounds.
Ngwenya, D. and Harris, G. 2015. Healing from violence: An action research project among survivors of Gukurahundi, Zimbabwe. Peace and Conflict Review, 8(2): 1-13