03 Feb IDC STANDS AGAINST GENDER-BASED VIOLENCE & VIOLENCE OF ANY KIND
Gender-Based Violence and Femicide (GBVF) is a widespread problem in South Africa, impacting all aspects of life. The World Health Organisation indicates that about 1 in 3 women worldwide has experienced either physical and/or sexual intimate partner violence or non-partner sexual violence in their lifetime. This status quo calls for deepened focus to address and respond to GBVF within SA across all institutions. The South African government is implementing the Emergency Response Action Plan on Gender-Based Violence and Femicide, which was announced by President Cyril in September 2019.
The IDC has taken a stand to support the government, civil society, and entities that are at the forefront of combatting Gender-based Violence and Femicide (GBVF). The protection of women is paramount for socio-economic wellbeing as GBVF has far-reaching consequences on women’s quality of life. To mark its commitment and contribution to the fight against GBVF, IDC started to roll out support to Women Shelters and Thuthuzela Care Centers (TCCs) across the country during the 16 Days of Activism Against Gender-Based Violence.
During Covid-19 Lockdown, the incidences of GBV particularly violence against women and girls increased considerably. The shelters that house survivors of GBVF have seen a substantial increase in the number of women seeking shelter during the National State of Disaster. This has caused an enormous strain on the resources of these shelters. The IDC team visited one of the shelters, Bombani Shelter in Alexander where the strain on resources was also evident. The shelter provides a therapeutic residential care program that offers counselling for abused women and their children and aims to capacitate these women with lifetime skills, substantial programs to develop esteem, and academic reliance. The hygiene packs received from IDC and partners contributed to the much-needed resources by the shelter.
The IDC support will reach 28 shelters nationally, reaching communities as remote as Springbok in the Northern Cape and Matatiele in the Eastern Cape. The initiative is rolled out in partnership with Imbumba Foundation, Mimi Women, and the Mina Foundation and provides hygiene dignity packs to 28 shelters across the country.