South Africa: National Development Agency On the Men’s Gender Based Violence and Femicide (GBVF) Dialogue

Men pledge to take a stand against Gender Based Violence and Femicide (GBVF) at Men’s GBVF Dialogue held in Lejweleputswa District

Men in Lejweleputswa are saying “No to Gender Based Violence”. They have formulated an ongoing programme that will be implemented in partnership with the Lejweleputswa Men’s Forum and National Development Agency (NDA) funded civil society organisations in the district.

Gender-based violence and femicide is a scourge that is devastating the South African nation. Particularly, since the Covid-19 epidemic, reports have exposed that violence against women and girls, particularly domestic violence, is on the increase. Violence against women and girls is one of the most widespread, persistent and devastating human rights violations in the country.

The NDA in partnership with the Department of Social Development (DSD) hosted men to a dialogue, giving them a platform to, with various community stakeholders, engage on issues of GBVF in order to encourage social behavioral change to limit the prevalence and spread of GBVF within the Lejweleputswa district.

“As a government agency, we are providing a platform for CSOs and communities to come together, have the difficult conversations that will help them to come up with solutions that bring about social behavioral change. The change is only possible when responsibility and accountability takes place in communities – that the ownership rests with them”, says Itumeleng Kwenane, Provincial Manager of NDA in the Free State.

This engagement was multi-faceted and include participation by Department of Social Development, Lejweleputswa District Municipality, Men’s Forum and CSO Organisations: Life Line – Free State; Guardian Angel Care & Support; Tshireletsong Victim Support Group, Theunissen Boitelo Victim Empowerment Organisation, Henneman Victim Empowerment, Safer SA, Hope Creations and Goldfield TIVET College.