Contributing towards the promotion of gender equality is critical to all CSVR’s work. This is implemented through a two-pronged approach;
- Dedicated interventions that seek to understand and address the effects of harmful traditional practices on women and youth
- Integrating a gender as a cross cutting issue in all core interventions and practices.
The overarching objective of this work is to understand the root causes of gender-based and youth violence in society and to develop strategies for violence prevention for use by civil society and government. This work is done through strategic partnerships with women, men, young people, Community-based Organizations (CBOs), national and regional organisations.
In order to develop effective responses to the problem of Gender Based Violence (GBV) in communities, the CSVR conducted a research that sought to understand the impact of traditional-cultural and religious practices on GBV. Upon completion of the research, the CSVR has been running a number of women and youth led projects aimed at addressing the impact of harmful traditional practices and holding government accountable to its institutional commitments and responses. These projects were implemented in five communities in different Provinces of South Africa, namely: Thulamela in Limpopo, Orange Farm in Johannesburg, Loskop in KwaZulu Natal, Bo-kaap in the Western Cape and Ekangala Community in Gauteng Province. Through this programme, the CSVR facilitates the creation of spaces for youth, men and women, traditional, religious and community leaders, local organisations and state institutions to dialogue about sources of GBV, HIV/AIDS and youth violence and collectively seek for solutions to address these In 2015 this project was expanded to Kagiso and Marikana communities.
At the national and regional level, the CSVR seeks to hold the state accountable to commitments made to address gender-based violence, through grounding our advocacy in the experiences and realities of women and men who live in the communities where we work. To date, the CSVR has been instrumental in providing input to state reports on relevant women’s rights instruments as well as coordinating the development of civil society responses and shadow reports where necessary. Our current work includes coordinating a South African civil society working group on monitoring the implementation of the Sustainable Development Agenda.
Gender and Disability Audit
As part of our efforts towards ensuring gender integration and disability inclusion in our programmatic work and operations, we are currently in the process of conducting a Gender and Disability audit. The Gender and Disability Audit is a self-assessment tool for identifying staff perceptions regarding how gender issues are addressed in programming and in internal organizational systems and activities. It is also a process for creating ongoing gender action planning, and to identify challenges and opportunities for increasing gender skills and organizational equality. This process will be finalised in April, 2016. News and updates on this will be shared through the website and other social media platforms.
Youth Violence Prevention work
CSVR’s Youth Violence Prevention work (which has now been integrated into our gender related work on violence) works on youth safety in projects advocating for a holistic approach to addressing challenges experienced by young boys, girls, and young adults in and out of school. Our Youth Violence Prevention work focuses on activities aimed at giving a voice to youth through creation of platforms where they are able to lead and take ownership in inculcating human rights understandings and approaches among young people and the society at large. In the past, the Youth Violence Prevention Programme was implemented in three communities of South Africa namely, Shamburg, Winterveld and Ekangala. In 2013, the CSVR felt that in order to be able to make substantial impact and transformation, and effectively monitor the progress of community projects there was a need to focus in one community, hence we chose Ekangala. In Ekangala community, the CSVR developed and supported interventions that seek to address youth-related violence.