South Africa: Khula Youth Network helps fight GBV

South Africa: Khula Youth Network helps fight GBV

Date: June 25, 2015
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Johannesburg, 25 June: Khula Youth Network (KYN) is a non-governmental organisation (NGO) from Hammanskraal on the outskirts of Pretoria. The NGO presented at the 2015 South Africa Gender Protocol@Work Summit, which came to a close last night after a vibrant awards ceremony. Although KYN did not scoop any awards, co-founder Kgomotso Kekana maintained that the summit is not about the awards, it is about learning and sharing. “To us it is not about winning but about spreading the message to fight gender based violence (GBV) in our communities.”

Kekana and Happy Phaleng formed the organisation in 2011. The organisation has various programmes running which include Theatre for Development and Girl Power-which is a programme to create awareness among young girls in the community. Their objective is to reduce GBV in schools and to educate youth about their rights and responsibilities, and to promote equality. The organisation currently has four volunteers that work alongside Kekana and Phaleng.

“Currently we are planning our annual seminar which we have hosted over past three years and we are planning one for this year in August which is Women’s Month.” The organisation has also partnered with their local Library to do monthly talk shows, and works with the University of Pretoria’s drama students for their Theatre for Development campaign. KYN goes out into the communities to gather information from young people about their understanding of GBV and then the information is workshopped into drama productions.

“In most dramas we have a certain character that interacts with the kids and gives clarity on what has happened. We identified a problem among young people, you’ll find a boyfriend beating up his girlfriend and most of us turn a blind eye on this in our communities. We don’t realise that this is gender violence and if we don’t intervene at the younger age it will be difficult when they are older,” explained Kekana.

He said it was very beneficial to attend the summit because they learned a lot from other organisations, and it gave them the opportunity to network and market themselves because they need to find ways to grow their organisation. “Being here helped us gain experience and we saw that all NGOs face challenges.”

This article is part of the Gender Links News Service special coverage of the SADC Gender Protocol Summits underway across the region, offering fresh views on everyday news.


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