Burundi Women’s Health Study

Location(s): Africa, Burundi,
Target Population: 
Women survivors of war who are either internally displaced, affiliated with ex-combatant or returnees (repatriated).
Project Team: 

Crista Johnson –Agbakwu, MD, PhD; Jeanne F. Nizigiyimana, MSW; Jenelle R. Walker, PhD, MS 

Project Status: 
Completed

In partnership with the Refugee Women's Health Clinic (RWHC) of Maricopa Integrated Health Services, this project is advancing knowledge about health issues faced by women survivors of war who are either internally displaced, affiliated with ex-combatant, or returnees (repatriated).

Primary Health Outcome

Reduction in health disparities through culturally and gender-specific health interventions sustainable in the urban and rural communities of Burundi. 

Approach

Needs assessment of the community, using a community-based participatory research approach, and focusing on culturally sensitive dimensions of wellness (spiritual, mental, and physical) important for health behavior.

Key Findings

The effects on health during the war ranged from physical health effects (i.e. disease and rape) to mental and emotional issues (i.e. anxiety and depression). Within physical health effects, the issues went beyond individual health issues to the loss of resources like health services and food deprivation. The current needs of the women included both direct individual health needs (ie. Health clinics) and socio-economic issues. Another major theme that emerged was the need for personal empowerment. Social support and education from associations that promote empowerment were stated.