Factors Contributing to Intergenerational Sexual Relationships among Refugee Girls in the City of Tshwane, South Africa

Azwihangwisi Helen Mavhandu-Mudzusi, Peter Thomas Sandy, Tshabangu Kalala Francis


Background::Young refugee girls are engaged in sexual relationships with older men under the guise of the phenomenon “sugar-daddy” with the primary motive of obtaining economic favours. Aim: This paper reports on a study that explored factors contributing to young refugee girls (aged 15-19 years) becoming engaged in intergenerational sexual relationships in the City of Tshwane, South Africa. Method: Interpretative phenomenological analysis was used in this study for both data collection and analysis. A total of 20 refugee girls living in the City of Tshwane were purposively selected to participate in the study. Data was collected through in-depth individual interviews. Results:: Powerlessness; increased libido; curiosity; perception of inferior status of the women; attitudes towards assertive women; culture; anonymity; high cost of living; unemployment; poor educational status and residential conditions emerged as the main contributing factors to the involvement of young refugee girls in intergenerational sexual relationships. These categories were grouped under three themes, namely: age, gender inequality and low socio-economic status. Conclusion: In order to reduce the involvement of young refugee girls in intergenerational sex which increases their risk of HIV infection, the study recommends the development and/or improvement of programmes using multispectral approach to attend to the growing situation.

DOI: 10.5901/mjss.2014.v5n20p2876

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Mediterranean Journal of Social Sciences ISSN 2039-9340(Print) ISSN 2039-2117(Online)

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