Unicef Condemns Recent Spate of Violence Against Women and Children in SA. 22/5/2017

Published by DISPATCHLIVE

Unicef is calling on government‚ civil society and community members to accelerate ongoing actions and increase investment in prevention and early intervention programmes to promote violence-free communities.

The murder of 22-year-old Karabo Mokoena‚ allegedly by her boyfriend‚ was the highlight of a week in which several incidents of violence against women came to light.

This included the rape of a pregnant woman by several men‚ and the abduction of a nine-year-old boy from Lenasia whose body was later found in a field.

‘These horrific crimes are yet another sign that violence is a daily reality for too many women and children living in South Africa’‚ said UNICEF South Africa Representative‚ Herve Ludovic de Lys. “UNICEF is deeply saddened and expresses its heartfelt condolences to the families of these young girls and women.”

One in three children in South Africa experience violence and one in five children of school going age experience sexual violence‚ according to data cited by Unicef.

The UN agency supports the efforts of the Government of South Africa in implementing the framework of the Children’s Act of 2005.

The actions cover advocacy or community-based responses which include‚ but are not limited to‚ the Inter-Ministerial Committee on Violence against Women and Children‚ the National Plan of Action for Children 2012-2017‚ the National Child Protection Week‚ and the Thutuzela Care Centres or the Isibindi approach.

Unicef SA recently hosted its Goodwill Ambassador‚ Hollywood actress Priyanka Chopra‚ who visited Isibindi‚ a community-based programme that strengthens families and helps to protect children from abuse‚ neglect and violence.

Endorsed by the South African Government‚ Isibindi focuses on the psychosocial wellbeing of children and adolescents by supporting positive caregiving and dialogue in the most disadvantaged families and communities‚ and assisting families to access key services.

Combined with Safe Parks‚ which are spaces for recreation and learning created especially for at-risk children‚ Isibindi is driving positive change‚ and offers hope and opportunity for children at risk across the country.

There are currently over 400 Safe Parks across all nine provinces which have supported more than 400‚000 children to date.

“Care and protection of children starts with all of us‚ in our homes and communities. Let’s keep our homes and schools safe for children‚” added Ludovic de Lys.