Lo­cal 16 Days of Acti­vism cam­paign kicks off

Knysna-Plett Herald - - Nuus | News - N­wa­bi­sa Pon­do­yi

Dif­fe­rent sta­ke­hol­ders in Knys­na ha­ve joi­ned for­ces for the 16 Days of Acti­vism a­gainst wo­men and child­ren a­bu­se and or­ga­ni­sed a se­ries of e­vents un­der the the­me #He­arMeToo: End Vi­o­len­ce a­gainst Wo­men and Child­ren!

In so­li­da­ri­ty with the an­nu­al national cam­paign laun­ched on 25 No­vem­ber, the lo­cal chap­ter in­clu­des the fol­lo­wing ro­le play­ers: Knys­na CPF, SAPS, Fam­sa, Knys­na Al­co­hol and Drug Cen­t­re, Cor­recti­o­nal Ser­vi­ces, youth po­li­ce, Ol­der Per­son Forum, The To­tal S­hut­do­wn acti­vist mo­vement, Knys­na I­ni­ti­a­ti­ve for Le­ar­ning & Trai­ning, Victim Sup­port and the Knys­na Wo­men Forum.

Du­ring their e­vent at the Knys­na Com­mu­ni­ty Day Cen­t­re in Con­cor­dia on 3 De­cem­ber, tho­se in at­ten­dan­ce we­re en­ter­tai­ned by Chris Nis­sen P­ri­ma­ry S­chool le­ar­ners through their mu­sic and dan­ce, and by poets T­hem­ba­ni Jod­wa­na and Kam­va­let­hu Mats­ho­na.

‘No lon­ger a victim’

One of the key­no­te spea­kers was Cyn­thia N­kwa­la­se who, ha­ving sur­vi­ved a­bu­se at the hands of her hus­band, bro­ke free af­ter 27 y­e­ars.

“I am no lon­ger a victim of a­bu­se but work with Knys­na SAPS victim sup­port to help ot­her pe­op­le get out of a­bu­si­ve re­la­ti­ons­hips, and I ho­pe they can be bra­ver and walk out fas­ter than I did,” she said.

A­not­her was No­lu­fe­fe M­balo, a com­mu­ni­ty le­a­der in the a­rea, who com­men­ted on how the law seems to “nur­se” the per­pe­tra­tor inste­ad of the victim. “We need victims to be pro­tected and ac­com­mo­da­ted,” she said.

Fam­sa’s Bu­si­si­we M­qul­wa­na and Ju-an­ne Ma­bie-Le­wis spo­ke a­bout the coun­sel­ling the or­ga­ni­sa­ti­on of­fers to victims and re­min­ded pe­op­le that their ser­vi­ces are al­so a­vai­la­ble at the cli­nic w­hen nee­ded.

In a press re­le­a­se, the mu­ni­ci­pa­li­ty an­noun­ced a se­ries of si­mi­lar e­vents for the du­ra­ti­on of the cam­paign that ends on 10 De­cem­ber.

‘So­cie­ty must stand to­get­her’

Ma­yor Mark Wil­lem­se said he is ple­a­sed that nu­me­rous sta­ke­hol­ders ha­ve co­me to­get­her for t­his im­por­tant cam­paign. “Gen­der e­qua­li­ty and the fig­ht a­gainst a­bu­se of wo­men and child­ren can­not be a­chie­ved by just one or­ga­ni­sa­ti­on.

“So­cie­ty as a w­ho­le, go­vern­ment and pri­va­te or­ga­ni­sa­ti­ons all need to join hands… and I ask that t­his con­ti­nues beyond 10 De­cem­ber.”

The cam­paign thus far in­clu­ded an HIV/ Aids A­wa­re­ness e­vent on 1 De­cem­ber at Buf­fa­lo Bay, fol­lo­wed by the Stop Gen­der Vi­o­len­ce I­ni­ti­a­ti­ve on 5 De­cem­ber at the San­lam Mall.

On Sa­tur­day 8 De­cem­ber, the #S­peakOut e­vent will ta­ke pla­ce at the R­hee­nen­dal com­mu­ni­ty hall and the fol­lo­wing day, the Stop A­bu­se A­wa­re­ness e­vent at “Die Par­kie” at the cor­ner of O­lip­hant S­treet and Ka­len­dar S­treet in Horn­lee. The cam­paign acti­vi­ties will be clo­sed off with a Mot­her and Daug­h­ter Works­hop at the R­hee­nen­dal com­mu­ni­ty hall.

“I al­so call on the men of G­re­a­ter Knys­na to par­ta­ke in the­se cam­paigns. We as men can­not put the bur­den of fig­hting gen­der­ba­sed vi­o­len­ce on wo­men on­ly, we al­so need to ta­ke a stand and fig­ht a­gainst t­his sort of a­bu­se. Ad­di­ti­o­nal­ly, we need to start te­a­ching our boys from an e­ar­ly age how to tre­at wo­men with re­spect and dig­ni­ty,” said Wil­lem­se.

Find out mo­re

For any furt­her in­for­ma­ti­on on the a­bo­ve pro­gram­me, con­tact Li­zel Baat­jies on 044 302 6343 or l­baat­[email protected]­na.gov.za.

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