Public relations is defined as a planned and sustained efforts by a library association or a library authority to promote librarianship within a given community or society. Similarly, according to Harlow, public relations is a distinctive management function which helps to establish and maintain mutual lines of communication, understanding, acceptance and co-operation between an organization and keep informed on and responsive to public opinion defines and emphasis the responsibility of management to serve the public interest, help management keep abreast of and effectively utilize change, serving as an early warning system to help anticipate trends, and uses research and sound and ethical communication techniques as its principals tools. Domestic violence is a global problem that crosses cultural, geographic, religious, social and economic boundaries and is a violation of human rights (Idris et al., 2018).
As a prelude to other parts of this study, this chapter will discuss the background upon which this study was initiated, the statement of problems that led to this study, the Aim and Objectives of the study. Others are Significance of the study, Scope of work, Research hypothesis and questions, Limitations of the Study and Definition of technical terms.
1.2 Background of Study
Over the years, majority of society has seen violence between married couples as personal problems that cannot be interfered (Khan, 2015; Oon et al., 2016; Carlson, 2005). Public relations is increasingly seen as a tool for grassroots and non-government organizations to create discourses that promote change with regard to various social problems (Demetrious, 2013; Somerville & Aroussi,2013; Soriano, 2015; Weaver,2013). Gender-based violence is a serious international problem underpinned by unhelpful societal attitudes and myths. Methods of public relations have the potential to challenge these underlying attitudes and create positive change and action. There have been campaigns tailored towards violence against the female gender. These campaigns have spanned through women activists presenting papers at conferences, rallies, protests, having meetings with stakeholders and many more. In the new millennium, all over the world, the rate at which women are being negatively portrayed still needs attention. Numerous women have continually been used as sex objects as well as objects of seduction (D’Enbeau, 2011).
Domestic violence is often described as a family-centred problem and generally understood as patterns of abusive and coercive behaviour, which may cause physical injuries, psychological and emotional disturbances, sexual intimidation as well as financial oppression of the victim (Ghani, 2014). There are many definitions of domestic violence, according to the World Health Organization (WHO, 2013), domestic violence can be defined as the intentional use of physical force or power, threatened or actual, against women, which either results in or has a high likelihood of resulting in injury, death, psychological harm, mal- development or deprivation.
Today, the Nigerian woman is seen everywhere and most importantly at the fore front in the society, this is sometimes because they want to prove a point of capability and availability of skills to do anything (Turner & Brownhill, 2004). Therefore, it is somewhat important to start educating the generality of the African girl child of the enormous potentials of the African and most importantly Nigerian woman and girl (Ajayi, 2015).
Social media has been used for a lot of campaigns against sexuality, women and child abuse. This has in no small way contributed to the level of awareness and enlightenments of citizens across the continent on the need to treat the female gender appropriately. With the aid of social media a number of revolutions have taken place as well as counter reactions of issues against the feminine gender, as women have now been able to raise their voice with the aid and support of social media (Roy, 2002: Takahashi, 2010).
Domestic violence against women occurs in all social and economic classes, but women with low socio-economic status are more likely to experience violence (Adekeye, 2008). As noted by Abama & Kwaja (2009), more research is needed to fully understand the connections between poverty and violence against women. It is clear that poverty and its associated stressors are important contributors. A number of theories about why this is so have been explored. Men in difficult economic circumstances may resort to violence out of frustration, and a sense of hopelessness, a condition akin to displacement in psychoanalysis.
Therefore, in Nigeria where the research was carried out, the activities that was conducted is to know The Role of Public Relations in the Curbing of Gender-Based and Domestic Violence Through the use Of Media Campaign.
1.3 Statement of Problems
Investigation revealed that most home are not intact as a result of issues of incompatibility of the couples, incessant violence leading to separation, divorce, death of a parent and the quest for the oversea trips to make more money, and at times marital infidelity. This has resulted in the separation of couples and children. In some states in the federation, this is quite clear, in that most young ladies abandon their homes, and embark on oversea trips with a view to making money. Some men, who travel abroad, abandon their homes and would not communicate with the families back-home so children from such homes are in dilemma, especially in schools. Moreover, a single parent faces doubled responsibilities requiring time, attention and money of the parent. Hence, less attention is paid to the education of the child. The teachers commonly describe children from broken homes as more hostile, aggressive, anxious, fearful, hyperactive and distractive than children from intact family (Tenibiaje, 2011).
1.4 Aim and Objectives of Study
The aim of the study is to examine The Role of Public Relations in the Curbing of Gender-Based and Domestic Violence Through the Use of Media Campaign using Akwa Ibom State Gender-Based Violence Management Committee as a case study. In achieving this aim, the following specific objectives were laid out as follows:
- To identify the factors that contributes to public responses regarding curbing of gender-based violence;
- To investigate the nature of public responsiveness toward domestic violence against women;
- To examine the prevalence of violence against women in Nigeria; and
- To determine whether social media utilization has helped in eradicating violence on young females in Nigeria.
1.5 Research Questions
The study came up with research questions so as to be able to ascertain the above stated objectives. The specific research questions for the study are stated below as follows:
- Does social media utilization assist in eradicating violence on young females in Nigeria?
- What is the nature of public responsiveness toward domestic violence against women?
- What is the prevalence of violence against women in Nigeria?
- What are the factors that contribute to public responses regarding curbing of gender-based violence?
1.6 Research Hypothesis
In order to pursue the objective of this study, the following generalized statements have been designed to guide and aids in obtaining the result for the experiment to be conducted. For this work, the null hypothesis will be represented with H0 while the alternative hypothesis will be represented with hypothesis H1.
- H0: There are no significant factors that contributes to public responses regarding curbing of gender-based violence
- H1: There are significant factors that contributes to public responses regarding curbing of gender-based violence
1.7 Significance of Study
The findings from this research could help policy makers, authorized agencies and non-governmental organizational leaders to strategize and adequately craft a suitable and high impact program that suits the target groups' needs and lifestyle. This study will also be of immense benefit to other researchers who intend to know more on this study and can also be used by non-researchers to build more on their research work. This study contributes to knowledge and could serve as a guide for other study.
1.8 Scope of Study
The scope of the research is focused on The Role of Public Relations in the Curbing of Gender-Based and Domestic Violence Through the use of Media Campaign using Akwa Ibom State Gender-Based Violence Management Committee as a case study.
1.9 Limitations of the Study
During the course of this study, many things militated against its completion, some of which are:
- Time Constraint: The time frame given to accomplish this project was very short due to school academic calendar and it was carried out under pressure which made the researcher not to implement some necessary features.
- Research material: availability of research material is a major setback to the scope of the study.
- Frequent power failure: This made the researcher append more money on fuel to ensure sustainable power.
- Financial Constraint: Insufficient fund tends to impede the efficiency of the researcher in sourcing for the relevant materials, literature or information and in the process of data collection (internet, questionnaire and interview).
1.10 Definition of Terms
Public Relations: It is defined as a planned and sustained efforts by a library association or a library authority to promote librarianship within a given community or society.