Hi friends! For those of you in South Africa, I probably don't have to explain too much about why I've started this funding campaign. For those of you outside South Africa, my home country is experiencing a crisis of violence against women for a while now, but the past few weeks has seen it escalate to horrific levels.
Uyinene Mrwetyana was a 19 year old media and film student at the University of Cape Town, who was raped and murdered earlier this month. She was duped by an employee at the Post Office into coming back later for her package, where he then brutally attacked her.
Natasha Conabeer was a 23 year old student from Durban, who was missing for 3 weeks, and was left on her parents doorstep yesterday, severely injured. She died today.
Leighandre Jegels was a world karate, continental and SA boxing female champion who was murdered by her police officer boyfriend last Friday.
These are just 3 names of many many names that feature in newspapers across the country preceded by that heartbreaking word. Was. Saddened (and considerably angry) by the current affairs back home, I thought this could be a somewhat constructive way to help.
Jes Foord is a rape survivor that I helped arrange a talk for at UKZN a few years ago, she does some truly inspiring work. I spent sometime researching which charity I would like to raise funds for, because there are so many people back home fighting this fight, but I chose Jes' charity because they have a program that mentors young men, using 'psycho-educational skills to instill healthy, positive leadership qualities that the foundation believes a male, living in South Africa should have.' I think this is so important. I know we live in times where we, unfortunately, have to teach our daughters to be alert and ever cautious, but ideally, we need to be educating our sons, brothers, husbands, boyfriends, friends, whomever, about consent, and revolutionizing the idea of what it is to be a man in South Africa, because it seems a significant number of the population has a very wrong idea of that definition, indeed.
The foundation also offers counselling to rape victims and something called the Handbag Project, which contains items that can assist a rape victim during the initial reporting process at the police station.
If you can donate anything at all, it would be utilized well, and would be very much appreciated by me, and the people you will potentially be helping back home.