Central Gauteng Lions (CGL), Lions Cricket, POWA, Imperial and various Union partner in #JoinTheChargeAgainstFemicide.

13 August 2020 | From Arrive Alive


The Central Gauteng Lions (CGL), Lions Cricket, POWA, Imperial and various Union partners hosted their official gender-based violence media launch campaign under the theme #JoinTheChargeAgainstFemicide. 
 
The launch was held virtually via Microsoft Teams. Romy Titus as the host was joined by the CGL President and Lions Cricket Chairperson Anne Vilas, CGL and Lions Cricket CEO Jono Leaf-Wright, POWA CEO Mary Makgaba, Unjani Clinics NPC CEO Lynda Toussaint, Imperial Lions Head Coach Wandile Gwavu, Imperial Lions Captain Temba Bavuma, CGL Senior Women and Momentum Proteas Cricketer Raisibe Ntozakhe and CGL Women Cricket Administrator Takatso Mkhwanazi as panellists. 

The key question was ‘how men can get involved in the fight against gender-based violence’. 
 
Raisibe Ntozakhe and Takatso Mkhwanazi shared their heartfelt childhood gender-based sexual violence experiences at the hands of their family members. 
 
According to Raisibe; “Everything started when I was 7-years old. I grew up in an abusive household. After my father passed on, I had to live with my grandparents and that is when the abuse started.  
 
“The abuse was fuelled by alcohol and it stopped when my grandfather passed on. I was suicidal at some point but managed to seek professional help. Playing lots of sport and especially cricket helped me get through a lot.  
 
“The whole experience taught me to be a role model to my siblings.” concludes Momentum Proteas and CGL Senior Women Cricketer Raisibe Ntozakhe. 
 
“For years, I used to be angry. I am still angry at what happened to my childhood,” commented Takatso Mkhwanazi, CGL Women Cricket Administrator. 
 
“I was sexually abused as a primary school kid by our neighbour.  
 
“In my high school years, my mother introduced her boyfriend to us. Every Friday, my mother and her boyfriend would go drinking or drink in the house. I would then hide all the knives in the house in case something happened at night. I witnessed an incident where my mother’s stomach was left open with a gaping wound by her boyfriend.  
 
“The scar remains and serve as a constant painful reminder.  
 
“I recently witnessed a number of young girl cricketers who get abused at home and they use cricket as a form of escapism similar to Raisibe and I.  
 
“We have seen a number of girls not coming to practice because they have been violated and felt ashamed. 
 
“These are young kids that come from different backgrounds and it is not easy for them to open up.  
 
“My wish is that we have more establishments where women and children can go to for assistance.  
 
“I wish CGL could have a stand in psychologist that can assist specifically with GBV issues. 
 
“As the cricket community we need to have more establishments where young women cricketers do not have to experience what Raisibe and I went through.  
 
“We carried this burden for a while leading to resentment and anger.  
 
“My wish is that no child, girl or women should experience gender based violence. 
 
“Men need to accept that they are the ones doing this to us. We are not harming ourselves. Men need to have conversations with themselves, form group support and start talking to each other about gender based violence issues.” concluded Takatso Mkhwanazi. 
 
“We as POWA will work closely with CGL and Lions Cricket family to address some of these challenges faced by women and children.  
 
“POWA has embarked on various integrated educational campaigns with the aim of curbing the scourge of femicide including providing safety shelters where women and children are afforded a safe space to share their stories.  
 
“Formation of men’s group and their participation in these sessions will be key in driving long lasting social change,” commented POWA CEO Mary Makgaba. 
 
“As Unjani Clinics with a network of 77-professionally run mobile clinics by nurses in various rural and urban areas, our aim is to provide primary health care and serve as a trusted resource to over 54000 patients that we serve monthly. 
 
“The nurses that are in our clinics are faced with women and children that have been abused almost on a daily basis.  
 
“Our clinics do assist in raising awareness and provide education to our vulnerable members of our society.  
 
“Our wish for this partnership is to be the source of education and empowerment to all the daily women and children that walk into our clinics and provide a safe space,” concluded Unjani Clinics NPC CEO Lynda Toussaint. 
 
According to CGL President and Lions Cricket Chairperson Anne Vilas: “As the CGL and Lions Cricket, we want to be at the forefront of this scourge together with our partners, men and women leading the charge to bring down these high level numbers of femicide and gender based violence. It is about respecting each other and teaching young boys and men to respect women as equals.” 
 
In the CGL and Lions Cricket CEO words Jono Leaf-Wright: “We as the Central Gauteng Lions and Lions Cricket want to make sure that we not only Join The Charge but we Lead the Charge when it comes to tackling issues of gender based violence and also ensure that every child and woman has a voice that can be heard so we can bring the high levels of femicide down.”  
 
According to the first Imperial Lions player to Join The Charge Against Femicide Temba Bavuma: “As the influential member society, I would like to use my role to effect positive change especially when it comes to the femicide scourge.  
 
“It does start with educating the society about the challenges faced by women when it comes to femicide specifically.  
 
“From the Lions perspective, we have always raised our hands on various socio-economic challenges and by way of example we supported people living with autism during our 2018/19 CSA T20 competition.  
 
“Joining the charge against femicide is something that I will personally be involved and encourage my fellow team mates to support.” 
 
The recently crowned 2019/2020 CSA Coach of the year and Imperial Lions Head Coach Wandile Gwavu threw his support and weight behind this campaign and said: “The gender based violence education should start with our mini cricket programmes where we seek to educate our youngsters about violence in general.  
 
“We live in the world where role models that we look up to have been very quiet when it comes to speaking out about issues of gender based violence and femicide.  
 
“Creating awareness around this issue is something close to my heart and I will support this campaign until we bring an end to this scourge.  
 
“The time has come that we action things. I am definitely happy that I am going to be part of this change.  
 
“Enough is Enough! concludes Wandile Gwavu Imperial Lions Head Coach.” 


 
 

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