What can you do?

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• Wear your White Ribbon from 25 November to 10 December 2011 to show your support.

• Speak out against woman and child abuse. Encourage silent female victims to talk about abuse and ensure that they get help. Report child abuse to the police immediately. Encourage children to report bullying behaviour to school authorities.

• Volunteer for non-governmental organisations and community groups who support abused women and children. Use your life skills and knowledge to help support victims of abuse.

• Contact your local police station to find out how you can join a community policing forum and help create safer and functioning communities.

• Men are critical partners in the fight against the abuse of women and children

• Families must stick together to create safe environment for women and children.

• Parents and adults can make sure that children are not exposed to sexual and violent material such as pornography.

• Make a contribution to the Foundation for Human Rights, which receive money raised during the campaign and distribute it to non-governmental organisations. Contact them at tel: 011 339 5560/1/2/3/4/5.

• Engage in online dialogues such as the Cyber Dialogues organised by Gender Links which provides a platform to share issues and experiences and offer solutions. Professional experts in the caring professions participate in the on-line chat room.

• Get connected with important contacts and information published on www.womensnet.org.za.

• According to the International Action Network on Small Arms (ANSA) Women’s Network, women are three times more likely to die violently if there is a gun in the homes. Report illegal guns to SAPS.

• Participate in the various 16 Days of Activism events and activities: Watch this page for a calendar outlining events taking place around the country over the period of the 16 days.

Wear your White Ribbon from 25 November to 10 December 2011 to show your support

What is Government doing?

• Government is establishing a Council on Violence against Women and Children. The Advisory Council will comprise of key government departments, civil society organisations and other relevant partners. It will coordinate comprehensive initiatives implemented to stop the scourge.
• The proposed Gender Equality Bill will provide government with the legislative authority to fast-track the empowerment of women and address issues of enforcement and compliance towards the attainment of our target of 50/50 gender parity. The final Draft Bill will be submitted to Cabinet for approval by March 2012.

• Development of a barometer to measure the number of women who will benefit from the five million jobs that we seek to create in the next 10 years under the New Growth Path, will highlight the high impact of unemployment on women.

• Government provides support to children to fight child poverty. We currently have more than 10,5 million children who benefit from the child support grant, while we provide foster care benefits to over 563 000 vulnerable children. Government subsidises close to 800 000 children at early childhood development centres to enable children from poor households to obtain early education. In addition, more than eight million children at primary and secondary schools benefit from school-feeding schemes.

• On 6 June 2011, Government launched the Strategy and Guidelines on Children Working and Living in the Streets. This Strategy provides guidance on the services and programmes to be rendered to children living and working in the streets.

• The Expanded Public Works Programme and a community works programme provide short-term employment opportunities while also responding to pressing community challenges.

• The Green Paper on Families [PDF] seeks to strengthen and support families as the cornerstone of a well-functioning society.

• Government led a national Rural Women’s Summit in May 2011 to empower women with information on how to access various departmental programmes. With the help of Government, women in Tzaneen run successful farms, mining as well as arts and crafts projects. These projects employ a number of people and their products are sold in domestic and foreign markets.

• Since 1994, Government has developed several pieces of legislation to redress the wrongs affecting women and children.

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