Townhall meeting on addressing violence against women in Lavendar Hill on 15 September 2012

Enhancing state and community response to Gender-Based Violence

South Africa prides itself on exceptional legislation developed for the protection of women against human rights abuses. Yet every single day we are reminded of the exceeding rates of violence against women. No-one knows this better than the community of Lavendar Hill. “Domestic violence and rape is rife in the community”, says Moriedah Dien, Counsellor at the Steenberg Police Station. There are many reasons, she adds, “[but] drug abuse [and gangsterism] plays a particular role in heightening the risk to women’s safety in our community.”

As a part of a project that seeks to enhance the states response towards Gender Based Violence, Heinrich Boll Foundation and the Tshwaranang Legal Advocacy Centre have partnered with the New World Foundation and local ward councillors to examine the role of local government in addressing violence against women. The event seeks to encourage the community to talk about the challenges that women face in the community in relation to gender-based violence and to find joint strategies to address this issue through partnerships between local government, civil society and community members.

“We are hosting this event to gain better insight as to what is happening in the community. We also want to look at what services and help exists for domestic violence and rape victims…[and] dialogue together on a common safe platform to determine the way forward on how to best assist in these matters for the community of Lavendar Hill”, says Kim Pillay, Programme Coordinator at the New World Foundation.

Community members, civil society organizations and the media are welcome to attend the event on the 15th of September 2012. Ward Councillors represent local government at this event. Relevant role-players such as the police and trauma counsellors, as well as organizations specialising in addressing violence against women will also be present at the event to provide FREE Legal advice and support to those affected in one way or another by women’s rights abuses.

Time: 09:30 – 14:00
Venue: New World Foundation, Grindal Avenue, Lavender Hill, Cape Town
Contact: Kim Pillay or Greg Philander (New World Foundation) on 021 701 1150, 0828608101 or Claudia Lopes (Heinrich Boll Foundation) on 021 461 6266, 0827808682.

“Strengthening State Responsiveness to Gender Based Violence” project funded by the European Union

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