Reducing Women & Children's Lives to Hashtags Instead of Taking Action

Thursday 18 May 2017

Save the Children South Africa CEO, Gugu Ndebele this week expressed a need to end violence against children and called for greater investment in prevention programmes.

“We need to stop being reactionary. Our emotions flare up when we hear these horrific reports of gender-based violence and brutal attacks on our children – as they should - but then we go back to our daily lives. We need to invest in preventing these incidents from taking place, protect our children and reclaim their childhood. We have comfortably reduced the lives of children and women to hashtags instead of taking action”.

Ndebele was responding to a series of news reports on gender-based violence, including the rape of a Grade 2 pupil in Randburg.

This week, Education MEC Panyaza Lesufi's spokesperson Steve Mabona confirmed that the Randburg pupil was raped at her school over the April holidays. In a statement, Mabona appealed to parents to assist the department to enforce discipline in and outside the school environment. This is a call which Save the Children South Africa strongly supports.

“The relationship between children and their parents is key to preventing violence in our society. If we can foster a closer bond between children, particularly boy children, and the parents we will see a decrease in the violent gender-based attacks that we are witnessing,” added Ndebele.

In November 2016 Save the Children South Africa, joined hands with the Gauteng government to reduce violence against children over the next five years. The partnership was born out of a costing study released by the NGO, which revealed that investment in prevention programmes is more cost effective and far more beneficial to society.

The organisation has since prioritised ending violence against children in South Africa and is working with government, the public and civil society to curb the number of child abuse and child homicide cases.

If you would like to support the end of violence against children visit www.savethechildren.org.za or participate in the conversation on twitter @savechildrenSA

(Photo Credit: UNICEF/UNI126735/Holt)

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For more information or to set up an interview contact: Lois Moodley on 0724401519 or [email protected]

About: Save the Children believes every child deserves a future. In South Africa and around the world, we give children a healthy start in life, the opportunity to learn and protection from harm. We do whatever it takes for children – every day and in times of crisis – transforming their lives and the future we share.

Note to the Editor: If children are affected, we’ve got something to say. Our team of experts are available for comments, interviews and information. 

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