We are looking for your help and not pity. We have many problems both globally and locally. We have been plagued with gender related abuse and we have spent more than 6 hours between the three of us discussing them. We are simple young South African men who are confused, but with a number of solution that we can propose and actually put to action.
We have explored the overdue necessity and the undoubted need for a global conversation to be had and held. We realized this particular problem of women killings, raping, trafficking (collectively termed femicide), the targeting and victimization of women for being just that....women, needs all of us. We as men, yes all of us and from all backgrounds and walks of life are in fact a problem.
We have not deliberately been putting ourselves out there because we are clueless but from this excuse are now intentionally proposing the most obvious solutions. We cannot expect or be expected to wait any longer and therefore propose a seemingly temporal solution while we continuously search for more much more needed solutions for such social injustice to our women and children. We want to take a stand, and we have also realized that we will be taking a stand on very SHAKEY ground.
Fundamentally, our Onus is to say “YOU ARE NOT NEXT” and we mean to do something about it. We hold the belief that femicide and our patriarchal misogyny are an undisputed problem and simply put wrong, inhumane and unjust. We also feel this problem is as long as time and needs our very urgent attention. We have moved from collation of existing material on the matters relating to this problem because we hold that the problem has been loosely approached.
It is our understanding also that we are not providing healing to the victims of rape, murder and violent brutal treatments that women and children are subjected to on a daily basis and in a place we now hesitantly call a beautiful rainbow nation and country.
The many unknowns and missed points and considerations to the problem we all know and are part of and these are the very reasons and basis for us to call on you to support our infant drive. We have considered that such a stand for social injustice may quarrel with the values of your organization, on this we plead with you to, like us, put our differences aside or our company values, so as not to degrade or infringe on them and what they stand for as far as missions and goals are concerned, but seek with you to reach a common ground for a greater good, a pedestal of hope.
While we urgently seek your support, we also urge you to provide guidance where we know have missed or may be oblivious to specific matters that nonetheless require specific considerations. However, we appeal to you to please be in full awareness that we do not intend on stopping our initiative, however seemingly insignificant we are not stopping until we can get scratch on this and get it moving.
We are looking for the following from respective organizations:
- Generic safety training from people in the space;
- Safety equipment that can be carried for use in immediate and eminent danger by women;
- Recommendable and useful “Panic button” Apps and the ‘how-to’
- Social training on how to react in seemingly dire situations where there is apparent danger and safety tips
What we are doing, as three young men, we are in the process of purchasing 50 pepper sprays to the value of 5000 ZAR. We will be distributing these in- and to areas that we have identified as areas of critical concern and to responsible persons or personnel (Universities, malls, schools etc). We have designed and in the process of printing t-shirts to raise awareness. Some of the t-shirts will be sold and all proceeds used to create more awareness. Additionally, we are designing and printing fliers to distribute to our fellow country men and women to create more awareness and love. On this we hope to partner with a lot of you.
We are under no illusion that this will be a long and convoluted process of engagement and action and will demand more of us than we are anticipating at this moment, on this we are saying doing nothing will be the ultimate fatal flaw.
An African proverb goes that “a speaker of truth has no friends”. We hope we make friends with all of you as we move to stand again femicide and any abuse of women and children.
We look forward to a more fruitful engagement with you.