Masimanyane Women’s Rights International, based in South Africa, has brought together three partner organisations to join together in an innovative project which will increase awareness of GBV, capacitate civil society organisations and young women to take the lead in advocacy campaigns, and hold governments in these countries accountable for ending GBV and ensuring improved service provision for victim-survivors of GBV.
The four partners in the African Programme are:
Masimanyane Women's Rights International (South Africa)
Gender Studies and Human Rights Documentation Centre (Ghana)
Forum Muhler (Mozambique)
Mentoring and Empowering Programme for Young Women (Uganda)
As a result of the project activities civil society will be strengthened through the building of coalitions of women’s groups, communities will take steps towards ensuring that perpetrators of GBV do not receive impunity for their actions, and governments will implement legal reforms to ensure redress for victim-survivors of GBV and the availability of effective service provision.
Apart from the capacity building which will be carried out in each country, young women will also be brought together for joint programmes which will assist in movement building among young women.
The project has a clear human rights focus and is built on feminist principles. It is participatory by design and recognises the value of people’s lived realities in the development of the project. As such it offers participants the possibility of shaping the direction of the project within their own communities to ensure contextual relevance.
MWRI will be the lead organisation for the project and will be responsible for ensuring its ultimate success. MWRI will bring together all partners for a series of meetings throughout the project period to discuss the project, its objectives and activities, and to agree on the administrative and financial guidelines to be followed. Furthermore this requires that MWRI staff to visit the project partners to ensure that project activities are being carried out and that all requisite documentation (narrative and financial) is correct and also that the agreed roles and responsibilities are being adhered to.
This project marks an important milestone in the development of MWRI. Through this project we will extend our reach as an international organisation and consolidate much of the work we have already engaged in. We see ourselves as being part of the women’s movement in Africa and recognise the importance of this for future efforts to ensure a continent where women’s rights are acknowledged, gender equality is realised, and GBV is ended.
Therefore the project aims to ensure:
The development of partnerships and multi-sectoral responses within communities
The implementation of holistic, multi-component programmes based on an ecological and systemic model
Capacity building for social change through information sharing and knowledge that challenges practises and attitudes
Inclusive interventions that include women and girls, men and boys.
Interventions based on solid research and which have a strong evidence base. Research has shown that addressing issues related to GBV requires a strong prevention strategy to ensure real and deep societal transformation.
Such transformative change is only made possible through collective action over a long term. In addition research has also borne out the importance of government support for such interventions through the promulgation and implementation of laws and programmes.