This project was made possible by the generous support of Action for World Solidarity, Mama Cash, and Nussbaum Foundation.
Time frame: October 2004 - May 2005
Total number of workshops conducted: 12
Total number of attendees: 208 people.
This is approximate because a few participants did not complete our registration form at each workshop, for different reasons including in rural areas some people are not able to write and may be embarrassed to admit this in public.
Available on request from each workshop are original handwritten participant registration lists and individual evaluation forms.
Communities and Partners :
Workshops were held in the following communities:
Athlone; Atlantis; Bonnievale; Caledon; Ceres; Green Point; Malmesbury/Riebeecksrivier;
Manenberg; Saron; Somerset West; and Wellington.
These workshops were in partnership with the following local organisations:
Atlantis community; Gender Advocacy Programme (GAP); Rape Crisis Cape Town & Heideveld;
Salesians’ Vanguard Project; Sarah Baartman Centre for Women & Children; South African National Civics Organisation (SANCO);
West Coast Community Foundation; and Women’s Empowerment Farmers/Workers in Bonnievale.
Description of workshops:
Sarah Baartman Centre for Women and Children, Athlone
The 1st workshop was held at the Sarah Baartman Centre for Women & Children, with several different NGOs and service providers, and served as a pilot for the entire project. Participants came from a range of fields: gender, gender violence, HIV/AIDS, women’s rights, community building, counseling, and conflict intervention. Participants came from different socioeconomic and cultural backgrounds, which further enriched the group exchanges and dynamics. From the handwritten evaluation forms it appears that keeping the group cohesive, interactive and coherent was successful.
Atlantis community, coordinated by Barbara Rass
The 2nd workshop was requested by a longstanding community organiser, Barbara Rass, for her under-serviced semi-rural community, Atlantis, approximately an hour from Cape Town, created under apartheid for black people, where gender violence (incl. child rape) is rife. Participants were service providers (local government and NGOs) as well as community leaders or volunteers, with a wide range of educational levels, incl. at least one “illiterate” farm worker.
West Coast Community Foundation, Riebeecksriver
The 3rd workshop was with the West Coast Community Foundation in a rural farming community, Riebeecksrivier, near a rural town of Malmesbury, approximately two hours from Cape Town. The participants were rural service providers and community leaders, including several farm workers, social workers, and teachers from outlying areas in this vast under-serviced region.
Rape Crisis Helderberg, Somerset West
The 4th workshop was requested by Rape Crisis Helderberg, servicing several surrounding semi-rural coastal communities approximately an hour from Cape Town. Except for a new black staff member, participants were middle class white Afrikaners, and hence challenging their fairly conservative apartheid education was more challenging than during other workshops with either more diverse participants, or exclusively black participants.
Women’s Empowerment Farmers/Workers, Bonnievale
The 5th workshop was requested by a school administrator in a rural farming community, Bonnievale, approximately three hours from Cape Town, with a very high child abuse rate. Participants were farm workers and empowerment farmers (former farm workers who with state funds purchased parts of the farms they were previously employed on).
Salesians' Vanguard Project, Cape Town
The 6th workshop was for the Salesians’ Vanguard Project, a group of dynamic unemployed young women receiving ICT training in Cape Town.
Rape Crisis Heideveld
The 7th workshop was requested by a Rape Crisis employee for her community of Manenberg, in which the Sarah Baartman Centre is located. The Centre served as venue for the workshop. Rape Crisis Cape Town, along with several other NGOs and service providers, are housed in this ‘one-stop’ Centre. Participants were mainly grassroots community members who knew each other, and needed significant support, with longer-term support provided by the Centre.
South African National Civics Organisations, Boland
Workshops 8 to 11 were with the South African National Civics Organisations (SANCO) Boland Region in their rural communities. They requested far more workshops than we could accommodate in the limited time frame of this project, but we hope that we could offer workshops to these other communities in the near future, subject to funding.
Gender Advocacy Programme: Local Government Project, Manenberg
The 12th and final workshop was requested by a leading local gender organisation, the Gender Advocacy Programme (GAP), for their Local Government Project, whose recipients are largely elected local government counsellors. Both GAP’s project coordinator and trainer participated and supported facilitation. Since all participants had undergone gender trainings with GAP in the past, this workshop could challenge participants best to shift beyond victimhood and embody their own power. Participants directly requested further advanced training, which GAP and Engender hope to collaborate on in the near future, subject to funding.
Several workshops are still pending, and others are on request, subject to funding:
- Local government of Paarl (an hour from Cape Town)
- Farming area of Grabouw with farm workers and emerging farmers (three hours from Cape Town);
- Further workshops for SANCO in their Boland rural communities with local community leaders;
- The rural community of Ceres, whose women-led advice office requested a workshop (three hours from Cape Town);
- Various urban communities in greater Cape Town, for community leaders.