Gender-Based Violence and Human Rights Imbizo

By Rammolotsi Sothoane

The South African constitution guarantees equality for women and the LGBTQIA+ community as well as the right to freedom from violence, and access to socio-economic rights such as housing, land, health and fair labour practices.

As South Africa commemorates Human Rights Day on the 21st March, it is important to reflect on progress that has is being made to empower communities to exercise their rights as enshrined in the constitution. Notwithstanding progress that has been made through legislation focused on the promotion of redress and equality in South Africa, much still needs to be done to address the structural determinants of inequality, exclusion and fragmentation among other things.

The high and ongoing incidence of rape cases, the perpetuation of rape culture, as well as other forms of physical and psychological violence against women, girls and the LGBTIQA+ community represent a profound social challenge affecting communities across the South African society. Our efforts to build peaceful, interconnected and cohesive communities across the country must be cognizant of the dire need to address challenges facing the most vulnerable in society, centering women, children and the LGBTIQA+ community.

Gender equity and justice are fundamental human rights, guaranteed in the South African constitution. These cover political, civil, economic, social and cultural rights, including sexual and reproductive rights. Throughout history women’s rights and gender equality have been seriously undermined by patriarchal economic, trade and fiscal policies that have increased militarization, violence, poverty and inequality (United Nations Human Rights, 2014).

With respect to the afore-mentioned, it is incumbent upon to us to create enabling spaces for conversations that will ultimately propel meaningful action aimed at creating an inclusive and equitable society. ACTIVATE! Change Drivers and the Institute for Justice and Reconciliation are committed to creating platforms for critical discourse on pertinent issues affecting communities across the country. The Gender-Based Violence and Human Rights Imbizo represents an effort to promote quality education on gender and human rights in an effort to build cohesive, interconnected and inclusive communities across South Africa. Imbizo (derived from the tradition of African people) are essentially solution based dialogues aimed at creating enabling spaces for people to engage and share practical solutions to challenges affecting the nation or community.


Leave a Reply

Sign up for our newsletter

Our newsletters are a round-up of the actions, conversations and thoughts of the ACTIVATE! network. Keep up with what’s happening in our network by reading our newsletters. Sign up here to receive them directly in your mailbox and read more stories of South African youth doing amazing work in their communities. This is the fabric of inspiration for a nation, the catalyst of youthful energy, understanding and action.

Co-financed by the Federal Republic of Germany through KfW and the DG Murray Trust.

All copyrights reserved for. The data presented here is from a sample of the Activate Change Drivers Network surveyed in 2017. Though efforts were made to make the sample representative of the Network, normal limits of sampled data should be considered in the use of this data. The information contained in this website is for general information purposes only. The information is provided by Siyashesha Leadership Incubator, the managing entity of the A! Change Drivers programmes and A! Change Drivers Network. While we endeavour to keep the information up to date and correct, we make no representations or warranties of any kind, express or implied, about the completeness, accuracy, reliability, suitability or availability with respect to the website or the information, products, services, or related graphics contained on the website for any purpose. Any reliance you place on such information is therefore strictly at your own risk. In no event will we be liable for any loss or damage including without limitation, indirect or consequential loss or damage, or any loss or damage whatsoever arising from loss of data or any benefit arising out of, or in connection with, the use of this website.