#VoiceandChoice SRHR awards
WINNER: Edinah Masiyiwa, Women’s Action Group, Zimbabwe
Since 2017, the Zimbabwe Women’s Action Group (WAG) has implemented a project aimed at starting conversations on safe abortion in Masvingo, Bulawayo and Gweru districts. The project sought to raise awareness on the Termination of Pregnancy Act (1977) through community dialogues. The project included a national survey on abortion attitudes, knowledge and practice as well as dialogues with Parliamentarians. A coalition of all organisations working on abortion meets twice a year. WAG has increased knowledge on the provisions of the Termination of Pregnancy Act and post-abortion care services among parliamentarians, health service providers to ensure women are able to access safe abortion services in Bulawayo, Masvingo and Gweru districts by 2019. WAG also managed to raise abortion as a national issue. The national coalition is now a recognized national advocate on safe abortion. Presentation

RUNNER UP: Bongile Mbingo, The Mayor’s Walk – Menstrual Health Campaign, Eswatini
The Menstrual Health Campaign themed My Period, My Power, My Pride started when the SADC Gender Protocol Alliance rolled out the Sexual and Reproductive Health Rights campaign following training by GL. As a Gender Champion, I attended the training together with the Gender Focal Person. The target population is Girls and Young Women, parents/ guardians and boys. The realisation is that everyone in the community needs information on menstruation to give support to the girls and young women going through this monthly growth and development milestone. Every girl and young woman goes through the monthly menstrual period. No matter the socio economic status, women need to access sanitary wear and information on menstrual health. The campaign aims to free young girls from shame; change attitude about menstruation; as well as provide financial and emotional support during their period. The project is sustainable in that it sits in the Mayor’s office and not only with the present mayor. Gender mainstreaming in the office through political buy-in ensures an existing project beyond personal passion. Guaranteed continuity, as there is budget set aside long term by the government office and CSO partners. Presentation
#VoiceandChoice GBV Award
WINNER: Rise up Against GBV, South Africa
This project started in Orange Farm as part of the Women’s Month activities in partnership with Distell. During the sessions, facilitators offered talks on issues of consent during sex, maintaining healthy relationships and anger management. Although men were initially hesitant to take part in the three-hour sessions, some men eventually started opening up about their experiences and realised some of their own toxic behaviours. Judges commended the unique approach of working with men in taverns should be replicated throughout the country. They said the approach is innovative; it goes to the men in the community. The bravery of this team is commendable. The dialogues open up a platform and space for men to have discussions that “should take place”, in ending and preventing GBV by tackling the root causes of male violent behaviour. Presentation

RUNNER UP: Memory Tshuma, Bulawayo City Council, Zimbabwe
Bulawayo City Council has pioneered awareness raising against sexual harassment in the workplace and academic institutions. The ultimate goal is to get zero Gender Based Violence in the University and Polytechnics in Bulawayo and other institutions that young students find themselves. Housed in the City Council the project has opened opportunities for discussions within academic institutions on SGBV and male abuse. The project has brought about anti-sexual harassment champions/ambassadors in colleges and in the city of Bulawayo. The linkage between human resource management and sexual harassment policy safe guards is a key policy matter in ending GBV related harassment in work places and academic institutions. Presentation
#VoiceandChoice Youth Award
WINNER: Youth United in Voluntary Action (Yuva), Mauritius
YUVA works with families, communities, and partners to ensure that children and young people enjoy good health, are educated for life, experience love of parents and their surroundings, and are cared for and protected. YUVA serves all children and young people, regardless of religion, race, ethnicity, or gender. YUVA launched the first-ever social enterprise in Mauritius, called the YUVA Leadership Academy. YUVA believes in the saying that “What gets measured gets done”. The judges’ commended the entrepreneurial skills developed which show sustainability, vision and focus. The newly developed training institution will see more young people acquiring education. The judges said that the project “is a great initiative of a youth-led social enterprise model. Beyond donor dependency this is the future and worthy of recognition.” Presentation

RUNNER UP: Dalva Mangoba, Young People in Defence of the Human Rights, Mozambique
Young People in Defence of the Human Rights, concerns the rights of Women Human Rights Defenders in the prevention of GBV. In Mozambique, women are isolated, marginalised and viewed as inferior due to cultural and traditional barriers. This project is innovative through its integrated approach, including assisting girls who dropped out of school due to teenage pregnancy to return to school. The judges commended the provision of child care to enable young mothers to go and attend classes to further their education. The project has a strong focus on reducing teenage pregnancy while bringing reform and combating all forms of Violence against Women and Girls. There is also focus on sexual reproductive health with attention on HIV-AIDS and related matters. Progressive gender perspectives are integrated into all prevention actions and strategies. Presentation
#VoiceandChoice Governance (50/50) award
WINNER: Lantoharitiana Ranoromalala, Madagascar
Promoting good governance at the grassroots level: non -discriminatory development that connects all sectors from gender to gender. Improving the management and implementation of gender -oriented development policies in 58 communes. Inclusion and equalization of the rights of women -men -young people in the development process. Inclusion of gender equality in all projects within the Municipality. Integrating all sectors (health- education- clean drinking water- safety) -so that they have an impact on improving people’s lives.
Assessment and measurement of basic governance indicators including women-youth participation (activism- motivation- participation).
Establishment of a grassroots consultation system (integration of all dialogue @ development) (SLC). Presentation

RUNNER UP: University of Mauritius, Mauritius
The Women in Leadership project was born out of the vision of its three founders, who are academics in the Department of Law, at the University of Mauritius. They wanted to create a platform and safe space for effective discussions, awareness, research and implementation of gender focused initiatives and measures at the University of Mauritius and beyond. Through the organisation of workshops, film and documentary screenings, public discussions, and research on gender equity and equality, the project is focused on encouraging gender representation at all levels of decision making in the public and private sector in Mauritius. A project to empower young women and men in Mauritius to become gender warriors and implement SDGs 5 – Gender Equality and Goal 10 – Reduced Inequalities.
#VoiceandChoice Economic justice award
WINNER: The Shack Dwellers Federation, Geraldine Theresia Massdorp, Namibia
Geraldine Therasia Massdorp from Namibia runs a project called The Shack Dwellers Federation of Henties Bay which currently consists of eight groups as a women-led savings networks established by the Shack Dwellers Federation of Namibia in association with Namibian Housing Action Group (NHAG) and the Local Authorities (Municipality). Members save on a daily or weekly basis to secure land for low-income earners and to leverage additional government contributions. Regular meetings take place every Sunday for information sharing and updates on securing affordable land. They have completed 189 houses with 41 currently under construction. Judges said that the project “promotes self-sustainability; a very informative project which the region can learn from, with powerful long term benefits for women, households etc. The scale up presents excellent challenges and opportunities.” Presentation

RUNNER UP: FemBioBiz Acceleration Programme, Marie Celine Zialor, Seychelles
Marie Celine Zialor from Seychelles runs the FemBioBiz Acceleration Programme has been created by the Southern African Network for Biosciences for female-owned businesses in the SADC region. Seychelles participated through The Guy Morel Institute. This programme creates a platform for peer learning and will empower women to lead in health and nutrition through science and technology. The Seychelles Chamber of Commerce and Enterprise, Seychelles Agency are also developing similar programmes. The judges commended the project for its self-reliance and becoming free off donor dependency, the M&E mechanism and mentoring programme. The presenter is now a Minister!
#VoiceandChoice Gender and climate change award
WINNER: Leonel João Machine, Beira Municipality, Mozambique
The initiative consists of the collection of solid waste in different urban areas (supermarkets, residential waste, and carpentry) to produce ecological charcoal (briquettes). Community involvement in the collection of solid waste encourages environmental sanitation. The project has already trained more than 50 women. Twenty three who are still active and are dedicated to the production and sale of charcoal. Twenty young people from the community dry the charcoal. The judges noted that the Municipality is doing excellent work to turn waste into ecologically friendly fuel. Presentation

RUNNER UP: Ruth Sethosa, Retla Kgona Disability Centre, South Africa
Retla Kgona Disability Centre based in GaMabiloane in Polokwane is a 48 member centre comprising 28 woman and 20 men living with disabilities. The centre was started to make the work of people living with disabilities more visible. The centre runs vegetable gardens which gives employment to the local community. Sustainable farming addresses climate change and mitigates against the effects of COVID-19. The judges commended the focus on one product at a time, which shows that the projects seeks gradual growth before diversification. The presentation could have been strengthened by elaborating on challenges. The design of project and funding could have been clearer. Presentation
#VoiceandChoice Media Award
WINNER: Joseph Mwale, The Nation, Malawi
The article titled Hunted like stray dogs: Refugee LBGTIs trapped showcases how some LGBTI persons were forced to flee their homes in the face of legal persecution. It highlights the very real threat of death at the hands of the state and communities because of their sexual orientation. The story exposes how the refugee LGBTI community is facing homophobic attacks from fellow refugees, the police and health workers at Dzaleka, the main refugee camp in Malawi. Women lesbians are being raped. Locals are not spared. This is affecting efforts to combat Gender Based Violence and HIV/AIDS. Section 153(a) of Malawi’s Penal Code punishes “carnal knowledge against the order of nature” with up to 14 years in prison. The judges noted that “the article highlighted deep and thought provoking issues and challenges of the LGBTI community.
The eye-catching title makes the reader want to know much more. The use of graphic images made the article that much more impactful. The number of people interviewed made for interesting and thoughtful reading.” Presentation

RUNNER UP: Gibson Mhaka, The Chronicle, Zimbabwe
The story headlined: “Managing menstrual hygiene with pride and dignity” is about the challenges being encountered by women and girls with disabilities in managing their menstrual hygiene which sometimes leaves them at the risk of even more health problems. The story highlighted the death of information on menstruation, Sexual Reproductive Health and Rights (SRHR) for women and girls with disabilities. The article also highlighted that the understanding of menstrual hygiene among women and girls with disabilities is not sufficiently addressed by authorities in the health sector thus contributing to shame, stigma and serious human rights concerns for girls and women with disabilities and their families. The article followed Menstrual Hygiene Day (MH Day) marked every May 28 to raise awareness on the challenges women and girls face due to menstruation and to highlight possible solutions to the challenges. Judges noted that “It is seldom that you read an article like this and on an issue that we take for granted every day as able-bodied women. The plight of women with disabilities has not been spoken on enough. The article was well researched, with fantastic insight from different women, showing their everyday life, clearly. Some standout issues were how the medical staff cannot speak sign language, how women living with disabilities need more assistance than men do- simply because of their biology, and that there is still a clear need for more. It is sad that in this era menstruation can still be an obstacle or something that can affect girls going to school. The article shows the realities of how people still grapple with the getting sanitary ware. This should not happen. The article moves all of us to do something to get this issue dealt with. Well researched piece.” Presentation
#VoiceandChoice Media 50/50 Award
WINNER: Nduduzo Tshuma, The Chronicle, Zimbabwe
The story concerns the 2013 Constitution quota for women’s participation in politics in Zimbabwe that comes to an end in 2023 and Government efforts to extend the clause to 2033. The story explores the advantages and disadvantages of the women’s quota and the need to extend this to local government. The story also captures the views of those advocating a more permanent framework. The judges commended the writer for challenging readers to understand why women participation is needed; challenging those in authority to make political inclusion a reality and come up with sustainable solutions to Women’s Political Participation.

RUNNER UP: Gibson Mhaka, The Chronicle, Zimbabwe
The article titled Traditional systems, customs suppress women’s aspirations for leadership reflects how existing traditional systems and cultural norms are making it more difficult for women to leave their traditional domestic roles to participate in politics. The judges cited the article as “a good example of fresh views on every day news. Traditional systems must involve women more. We need to encourage women to be more involved. The piece shows that although so many protocols and policies exist on the participation of women in all spheres of governance, they are still not present.” Presentation
Drivers of Change
WINNER: Nicolas Ritter, ED of Information et Lutte contre le Sida (PILS), Mauritius
Nicolas Ritter, an HIV & Human Rights activist, is the Executive Director of PILS, the largest HIV organisation of Mauritius. Coalition Plus unites different NGOS fighting against HIV. Ritter, a man of art who has an immense love for theatre, musicals and films, has initiated many projects which have shaped and are still shaping the social landscape of Mauritius and the lives of people. He is the founder of PILS (1996), the Founder of Sida Info Maurice Hotline (1997), the founder of the first PLHIV network in Mauritius (2002), the founder of the first PLHIV network in the Indian Ocean (2003), the Co-Founder of CUT, the first and only Harm Reduction organisation in Mauritius (2004), and the Co-Founder of Collectif arc en Ciel, the first LGBT organisation in Mauritius (2005). He is the first Mauritian to publicly disclose his HIV+ status (2001). As the Executive Director of PILS, he is working towards ensuring the health and rights of the LGBT community. He is also the Ambassador Rise and Shine (EU) and the Co-founder of the Rainbow Parade in Mauritius. Judges said that Ritter is an example of bravery: “mind blowing that one person can be the founder of so many movements. You deserve to be recognised. An outstanding case study of a driver of change!” Presentation

RUNNER UP: Resta Dzvinyangoma, Deputy Chair Murehwa Council, Zimbabwe
Alderman Resta Dzvinyangoma describes herself as 45 years old, ​ married with four kids and one grandson​. She resides in Gatsi village, ward 1 Murewa,​ under the Headman Nheweyembwa, Chief Mangwende, Mashonaland East Province.​ She says she is: “a driver of change, politician, ​Councilor-policy maker, mentor, counsellor ​gender equality advocate, Provincial Women in Local Government (WILGF) ​Chairperson, Vice Council Chairperson, Gender ​Committee Chairperson​.” She describes her unique character as “overcoming all the hardships” and becoming the first woman councillor in her ward. ​Her achievements at policy level include advocating for a standalone gender committee and sub committees; ​junior council and sub committees; ​gender sensitive council policies​; gender policy and manual; ​stand allocation policy​; sexual harassment policy; ​recruitment policy; ​climate change policy; ​HIV/AIDS policy; and a ​policy on ending child marriages. ​ The judges commended Dzvinyangoma for being the first female councillor in her ward: “Wow! A real inspiring story of resilience and hard work, bravery and an unending strength. You deserve it all!” Presentation
Sunrise campaign 6 to 12 months
WINNER: Kadimo Helen Duiker, Francistown, Botswana
Kadimo Helen Duiker from Botswana runs DHEL – JOY Investments which is a 100% citizen owned company based in Francistown. She started operations in 2013 as a catering company trading as Kam’s Food. Over time they have managed to diversify their product offering by setting up a bakery offering baked bread and confectionaries. ​ They pride themselves in understanding that each client is unique. Her competitors include restaurants, hotels and other food caterers as well as bakeries since we expanded into baking. She makes sure that she’s always a step ahead of the competitors by introducing new dishes or style of preparing dishes from time to time, attracting ethnic groups in the area by cooking their traditional dishes. The judges said this appears to be a “dynamic, empowered young woman who knows what she wants and how to get it. She is very agile and has risen to meet the changes needs as a result of the pandemic. From two chaffing dishes to buying a piece of land… A good business and I like the way you market the business and its growing big.” Presentation

WINNER: Anna Moritimone Molala, Limpopo Province, South Africa
Anna Molala is from Limpopo province in South Africa and is a farmer. She educates the community to survive from their own gardens, catering and farming workshops. ​ She also helps the people in and around her community to start their own businesses, especially women who found it hard to survive during the pandemic. She supplies seeds, plants, and training. ​During lockdown Level 5, she partnered with Zingela Ulwazi in Mpumalanga Acornhoek, an organisation that helps women to sustain themselves, especially during the pandemic. The judges commended Molala as “an amazing example of a successful business woman without any formal knowledge or training. She should be used to train others especially Post- Covid.” Presentation

RUNNER UP: Patience Muyenyiwa, Manyame District Council, Zimbabwe
Patience Muyenyiwa runs three businesses which include poultry, tobacco farming and a pre-school and also do décor. ​ She operates at Roslin farm in Manyame Rural District council. The business comprises the owner and 7 part-time employees. ​ She produces broilers and keeps them in separate batches to ensure continuous supply. The judges said this is a good example of a diversified, sustainable business. They commended Muyenyiwa for her good ideas on future plans and expansion. Presentation
Sunrise campaign longer than 12 months
WINNER: Emelienne Klert, Madagascar
Emelienne Klert from Madagascar runs a fish farming business. She harvests 1000 Kg from one fish farming pond of 700 square meters. She is a member of the fish farming association and runs her own shop used to market the fish of other members. The judges commended Klert for breaking into this traditionally male-dominated industry and helping to improve the lives of other local women. They wished her every success in the expansion of the business. Presentation

RUNNER UP: Sibonginkosi Moyo, Zimbabwe
Sibonginkosi Moyo owns Fortunefaith Clothing which produces school uniforms, seat covers, curtains, bedcovers, dresses and ties. ​The business started on the 15th of January 2014. It faces a stiff competition from Esats, Toppers, Femina Garments, Hassamals and Ramjis.​ Despite the competition, the company manages to attract customers due to the customer care and quality of service provided, for example reaching order deadlines, listening and responding to complaints appropriately. The judges commended the “well-grounded business woman with great potential for expansion and growth. She has shown incredible turnaround from being a survivor of GBV to making her own life choices.” Presentation

RUNNER UP: Nomcebo Dlamini, eSwatini
Nomcebo Dlamini runs a business called Highclass Fashion and Design. She has increased her customer base through opening a business page on Facebook, Instagram and WhatsApp. She knows what her customers want and gained more knowledge through Gender Links training. The judges commended Dlamini, for amazing creativity and flexibility. Very innovative. By addressing her own needs for plus size clothing, she has created a clever business that has expended outs range of products.” Presentation
Local government most resourceful rural council
WINNER: Goromonzi Rural District Council, Zimbabwe
The Council has a gender policy and action plan and a good Gender Management System (GMS) in place. The council has a Gender Responsive Budget (GRB), with funds allocated to construction of schools and clinics, solar power at clinics, street lighting and naming. There are good Local Economic Development (LED) programmes benefiting and training women. Goromonzi Rural District Council has various arrangements with partners to promote and access finance for local entrepreneurs, especially women, People with Disabilities (PWD) and the youth. The Council provided land for the construction of a vegetable market. They have trained more than 100 survivors of GBV as entrepreneurs and have GBV messaging on all council correspondence. Goromonzi has a one stop centre for GBV; seven mobile clinics and works with a range of partners to implement SRHR programmes including Comprehensive Sexual Education (CSE) campaigns. Presentation

RUNNER UP: Savanne District Council, Mauritius
The Council has gone from strength to strength in its gender mainstreaming and partnerships created. The council has a gender policy and action plan covering five key areas. They are implementing good Local Economic Development (LED) programmes with stakeholders by creating a platform and training space for women in economic development. There is good involvement of politicians and officials. The Sexual and Reproductive Health and Rights (SRHR) programme focuses on broader social issues. There is also good involvement of external partners. Presentation
Local government COE most resourceful urban council
WINNER: Beitbridge Council, Zimbabwe
The border town has a gender policy and action plan which were reviewed in 2019, and a good Gender Management System (GMS). The council allocates 16.3% of budget to gender largely for GBV campaigns and workshops. The council has established a satellite clinic and upgraded Dulibadzimu Clinic to create space for  a maternity ward to reduce distances walked to clinics. Beitbridge offer youth friendly services. Youth have access to family planning and CSE. The council has erected solar powered street lights to help prevent GBV. It has established a shelter and victim friendly unit. Presentation

RUNNER UP: Vacoas Phoenix, Mauritius
At less than one percent, the Council budget for gender mainstreaming is very low. Yet Vacoas Phoenix has mobilsed in-kind resources and fostered good partnerships. Judges commended the good, inclusive climate change interventions; SRHR programmes focusing on issues that affect women specifically like cervical cancer and pregnancy; as well as GBV programmes that include a control room, hotline and campaigns. Presentation
Local Government most improved performance
WINNER: Epworth Local Board, Zimbabwe
Although there is still low representation of women in council (no women out of seven councillors) women comprise 44% in management. The council has a draft gender policy; action plan and Gender Management System (GMS) in place. Eleven percent of the budget is allocated to gender mainstreaming and gender specific programmes. In partnership with UN Women the council upgraded informal vending spaces​ and created a children play center next to the market. This gives mother vendors peace of mind. The council has established a junior council and works with the junior councillors on GBV and SRHR campaigns. Areas for improvement include gender disaggregated data on Local Economic Development (LED) initiatives. Presentation

RUNNER UP: Commune Urbaine de Moramanga, Madagascar
The council has a gender action plan and Gender Management System (GMS) but is encouraged to present sex disaggregated data. The council is collaborating with the private sector to  promote Local Economic Development (LED).  Ambatovy finances the training of vulnerable women​. Allocated budgets require further breakdown and there is a need to measure more effectively how women benefit from LED projects; SRHR and GBV initiatives. Presentation
Local government best performer – Rural
WINNER: Murehwa Rural District Council, Zimbabawe
In 2020, just before the Southern Africa went into COVID-19 lockdown Murehwa hosted a study visit by GL country managers, inspiring the regional work of the whole organisation. Murehwa is a “hub” in the Dura/Isiphala model that has been piloted in Zimbabwe. Although there is still low representation of women as councillors (13%) women comprise 31% of all managers. The council has a good policy framework – with reviewed and adopted gender policy and action plan, a SRHR action plan and a gender sensitive climate change policy and standalone gender sensitive infrastructure policy that encourages women to apply for land. The council has good Local Economic Development (LED) programmes and has allocated 45% of plots to women. Murehwa has established a junior council. The junior councillors lead on all Sexual and Reproductive Health and Rights (SRHR) and GBV activities. To address GBV, the council has improved street lighting and have awareness messages on council communication, as well as a one stop GBV centre. Murehwa has supported 30 survivors of GBV who have trained as entrepreneurs as part of the Sunrise campaign. The council has a standalone gender committee and also houses a gender resource centre. Presentation

RUNNER UP: Savanne District Council, Mauritius
The Council is setting a steady pace on gender mainstreaming creating strong partnerships in the process. Savanne is implementing good Local Economic Development (LED) programmes with stakeholders, creating a platform and training space for women in economic development. There is good involvement of politicians and officials. Sexual and Reproductive Health and Rights (SRHR) has a good focus on broader social issues. Presentation
Local Government best performer – Urban
WINNER: Polokwane Municipality, South Africa
Polokwane Municipality has good gender management systems in place and the council has a clear mandate in terms of gender mainstreaming. The council has excellent representation of women as councillors with 51% being women. The Executive Mayor, chief Whip and five portfolios chairpersons are women. However, women comprise only 25% women of those in management and 35% of all employees. The council has a gender policy and there is a multi-party women’s caucus action plan and a sexual harassment policy. The council has good Local Economic Development (LED) initiatives. Women constitute 75% of the beneficiaries of these initiatives. SRHR initiatives focus on HIV and AIDs. An outreach programme targets sex workers. The council implements a GBV action plan and participates in various campaigns including and on violence against LGBTI ​ people. Polokwane conducts four GBV workshops a year and undertake regular gender mainstreaming training. Presentation

RUNNER UP: Mutare City Council, Zimbabwe
The council has a good policy framework including a Gender Policy adopted by Council in 2015​. The Council has reviewed its Gender Action Plan and is implementing GBV and SRHR action plans. There is a good Gender Management System (GMS) with Gender Desks and Sub-Committees comprising departmental focal persons from Council’s six departments. This reports to a Gender Management Team comprising Departmental Heads.  The team provides the direction in the formulation of policies, development of indicators of effectiveness and time frames for implementation and monitors the performance of the Gender Desk Sub Committee.  The informal sector policy included 50/50 allocation of sites. Mutare has established seven women empowerment clubs. The councils provided a range of SRHR services spearheaded by the Junior Mayor and gender champion. ​Women still comprise only 26% of councillors and 31% of those in management. This is an area for improvement in the future. Presentation