Rock Girls from Manenberg inspire peers in PE to start their own chapter
A GROUP of girls from Manenberg who travelled to the Eastern Cape recently as part of an initiative to highlight gangsterism and crime has spurred a positive change in Nelson Mandela Bay.
The 12 teenage girls – who are part of an NGO called Rock Girl, which seeks to uplift young women living in traumatic surroundings – shared their experiences with young women along their journey.
With the help of community leaders, and after being inspired by the girls from Cape Town, the girls from Port Elizabeth have now started their own Rock Girl.
Rock Girl founder India Baird said that while theywere in Nelson Mandela Bay last week, the girls from Manen- berg met girls from New Brighton and Helenvale.
“The girls shared stories and offered each other support, and after we left, the girls there expressed the need for their own Rock Girl to be formed. Rock Girl is now making a difference in the lives of young women in Cape Town and Nelson Mandela Bay.”
Baird said community leaders Mike Pantsi, from New Brighton, and Minnie Trimmaley, from Helenvale, met yesterday to create a Rock Girl Nelson Mandela Bay group.
“They will be guided by the Rock Girl Charter and will advocate for girls in the Port Elizabeth area. We are thrilled they are taking the initiative and supporting one another across the city.
“We are absolutely delighted. It’s really exciting and it’s all thanks to the girls in Cape Town. It’s all very exciting.”
Trimmaley said a group of around 10 to 15 girls aged 15 years and up had expressed their desire for a Rock Girl in Port Elizabeth.
“The girls heard that the girls from Cape Town had been through similar situations and they were looking forward to meeting them.
“When they met they shared stories with each other, and most of them could relate to each other. There’s no safe place for them in their communities and the Rock Girls initiative is a great opportunity to provide a safe place for them to support each other,” Trimmaley said.
She said they shared stories with each other about their experiences, such as rape and witnessing murders.
Pantsi said the idea was for the girls from Helenvale and New Brighton to use the experiences of the girls from Manenberg to work together.
“We want to keep the name Rock Girl, but add the isiXhosa word Imbokotho, which means rock. We want these girls to start being pioneers in their own right,” he said.
They shared stories with each other about experiences such as rape and witnessing murders