Generation Gender (GenG) National Imbizo 2023 – 16 Days of Activism Campaign
The 16 Days of Activism Campaign is an international United Nations-endorsed initiative that takes place annually from 25 November – International Day of No Violence against Women – to 10 December, International Human Rights Day.
Since 2019, with the establishment of the Ministry in the Presidency for Women, Youth and Persons with Disabilities in South Africa, the campaign is broadened to also look at issues of violence against the youth, the LGBTQIA+ community, and persons with disabilities, in particular women and children with disabilities. The period also allows reflection on violence and abuse experienced by women pushed to the periphery of society – women migrant workers, and illegal citizens, and sex workers.
According to the third quarter (July to September 2023) crime stats released and presented in Parliament, by the Minister of Police, Bheki Cele, it was noted that despite the overall drop in the country’s murder rate, between July and September this year, 6 945 people were murdered in South Africa. Out of the people killed during this reporting period, 881 were women and 293 were children. The statistics show that less women and children were killed in South Africa, between July to September 2023, (decreasing by 10.9% and 7.0% respectively.)
Youth network responds to the high levels of GBVF
The continued high levels of gender-based violence and femicide (GBVF) in South Africa are a blight on our national conscience, and demand a whole society approach to understanding, responding, preventing and ultimately eliminating GBVF. Despite the existence of progressive legislative progress to address GBVF, ineffective coordination and nearly insufficient budgetary resources for prevention and services have hampered attempts to meaningfully respond to the challenge.
Given that gender-based violence is embedded in social contexts, prevention programmes require strategies that challenge the value systems, norms, and social environments that normalize violence.
Responding to this, youth network ACTIVATE! Change Drivers plans to convene a Generation G National Imbizo with the theme: “Strengthening community leadership to combat gender-based violence and femicide”.
The Imbizo will take place on the 25th of November 2023 at Constitutional Hill, Women’s Jail from 9h00 to 15h00 and aims to create a suitable platform for communities to explore multi-stakeholder and multi-faceted responses to the challenge of GBVF.
Reflecting on the Imbizo, ACTIVATE! Special Projects and Strategic Partnerships Manager, Rammolotsi Sothoane, outlines the objectives of the imbizo.
“The Generation G National Imbizo brings together a broad spectrum of activists, thought-leaders, and civil society organizations from across the province to critically reflect on the pressing issue of gender-based violence in the province and to explore community coalitions as a possible response. With this in mind, the Imbizo sets out to achieve the following objectives…”
- Explore community leadership as a catalyst for promoting gender justice and preventing gender-based violence.
- Promote meaningful and impactful collaboration between communities, government, and other stakeholders
- -Understanding Gender Transformative Approaches as a response to gender-based violence.
Youth network ACTIVATE! Change Drivers is committed to creating provocative and empowering platforms for critical discourse on pertinent socio-economic issues affecting communities across the country. Moreover, the network seeks to empower communities in general to be active partners in the process of social transformation.“The Imbizo will draw from the knowledge and experience of various thought leaders and industry experts in youth development, social innovation, change management and grassroots leadership to respond to the important task of empowering communities to actively address the challenge of gender-based violence. In line with this, various stakeholders from across the country will collectively explore different approaches and strategies through a multiplicity of engagement platforms at the Imbizo including expert presentations, panel discussions, and a talk show”.
Community participation provides a means of challenging these social dynamics and has attracted widespread attention in recent years from both practitioners and researchers. Any genuine effort aimed at creating enabling conditions for community participation towards the prevention of gender-based violence must be cognizant of the need to strengthen the capacity of community leaders to drive meaningful and lasting change in society.
Calling on all sectors of society to get involved Sothoane notes that;
“At the core of this important task should be a commitment from all sectors of society to empower a cohort of community leaders in order to mobilize community participation in all efforts that seek to promote gender justice and prevent of gender-based violence” – he adds.
ACTIVATE! Change Drivers recognizes the importance of creating enabling platforms for discourse on pressing societal issues facing us today and how communities can be empowered to actively and meaningfully contribute towards addressing them.
About Generation G
The Generation G partnership strives towards the creation of gender-just and violence-free societies with and for young people in their full diversity. By gender justice, we mean a fair, equitable world for all individuals regardless of their gender. We aim to contribute to this change in Indonesia, Jordan, Lebanon, Morocco, Rwanda, South Africa, and Uganda with regional and global-level support for these in-country changes. The Generation G partnership is a collaboration of partners in seven countries with a global consortium consisting of Rutgers (lead), ABAAD, Promundo, and Sonke Gender Justice. The Generation G South African Coalition comprises of Sonke Gender Justice, Action Aid, and ACTIVATE! Change Drivers.
About ACTIVATE! Change Drivers
ACTIVATE! Change Drivers is a multi-sectoral youth development programme with a national network that in the past 10 years, has delivered a leadership development programme to over 4325 young people from across the country, with tools to enable platforms for youth leaders to connect, share ideas, and be empowered to become active change drivers in their communities.
For more information please contact us at email@example.com or call Rammolotsi Sothoane on 0676193855.
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