Standing together against gender-based violence

Mdantsane NU3 youth marched to Qumza Highway taxi rank to raise awareness about gender-based violence.
Mdantsane NU3 youth marched to Qumza Highway taxi rank to raise awareness about gender-based violence.

A group of about 50 young people from Mdantsane’s Zone 3 on Friday marched from their area to the nearby Qumza Highway taxi rank, calling for an end to gender-based violence (GBV).

Led by non-profit organisation Real View Foundation, the marchers displayed placards denouncing GBV in their communities and calling on law enforcement agencies to do their part in ensuring perpetrators stay locked up.

As Women’s Month draws to an end, Real View Foundation founder Bulelani Fowl said raising awareness about GBV needed to continue until the scourge was eradicated.

“The reason behind this campaign is that GBV cases keep occurring in our communities, but we don't see anything being done.

“Recently, in our area, a young woman was strangled to death by her partner,  and we then decided as the community to deal with this matter by removing the man in our community,” Fowl said.

He said the perpetrator had since been arrested and sentenced to a prison term.

The march was in partnership with two other NPOs, Indod’okwenyani Men Support Group and The Better Future, and was also joined by ward 14 councillor Zininzi Mtyingizane.

“I am fighting for women and children. I am pleading with men to stop abusing and killing our women and children. Let’s  protect them instead,” Fowl said.

Real View Foundation is an NPO focusing on vulnerable children while also catering for senior citizens. Fowl said the foundation’s main goal was to help needy people in the community.

Mtyingizane said as a woman, mother and wife she had decided to stand up and be part of the campaign in her ward, because she was also affected by the daily occurrences of GBV.

“As the leader of this ward, I want to encourage young people to open these kind of programmes to elders, as we are aware as adults that our children are being abused and we are willing to fight  with them.”  

Mtyingizane added they want their voices to be heard by law enforcement so protection of the vulnerable could be prioritised.

“This GBV is not only happening in our community, but worldwide,” she said.

The Better Future founder Avela Matinise echoed Mtyingizane’s words about the importance of showing solidarity.

“My foundation solely focuses on homes that have senior citizens as breadwinners and young children who depend on grant payments.

“Since I am dealing with children in my foundation, they are being raped and killed, so being part of  this campaign plays a huge [role] not only in my foundation, but in my community as well,” Matinise said.

Founder of Indod’okwenyan Men’s Support Group, Nkosinathi Fulani, said the dignity of men needed to be restored in communities, because it had been tarnished by those men who found it normal to kill and abuse women and children.

“Our aim as the support group is to recruit men and teach them about not being violent towards their partners, parents and children.

“Raising your hand to anyone does not measure the level of your manhood.

“Let us unite as men and combat this pandemic that is affecting our country,” Fulani said.


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