Globally, there are 285 million widows and over 115 million of them live in deep poverty, in fragile
conditions and vulnerable to abuse. These widows have been referred to by the UN as ‘invisible
women’ (UN Women, 2001) due to the absence of data on their situation. This document provides a
review of the evidence on harmful cultural practices against widows and preventive measures.
Fraser, E and Nwadinobi, E (2018) Harmful Cultural Practices towards Widows, VAWG Helpdesk
Research Report No. 196. London UK: VAWG Helpdesk.