Yesterday we hosted the first workshop as part of our Mandela Day campaign, which aims to expose rape culture and inspire community members to come up with actions they can take on Mandela Day to challenge this culture. Rape culture links rape and sexual violence to the culture of a society showing how prevalent attitudes and practices excuse, tolerate and even condone rape. Rape culture in South Africa is fueled by the myths and stereotypes that our society holds about rape.
The workshop was hosted at Rylands Library in Athlone and was attended by high school youth, college students and local community members who all came together to talk about rape and particularly those attitudes and stereotypes that drive rape in the community.
Creative Consulting & Development Works was on hand to film, photograph and document the day’s activities and will be helping us to share the participant’s Mandela Day activities with others.
After an energetic ice-breaker led by the high school youth, we dived straight into a discussion about rape culture. We debated some of the common stereotypes about gender differences and how boys and girls are brought up to behave and think differently. The presence of both young men and women gave our discussions a welcome liveliness and we were pleased to see young people voicing their opinions in a respectful way and feeling free to share their views so openly.
After tea we got into groups and came up with ideas about how we can expose rape culture in our communities and presented these to the larger group. The activities include a walk-about in Manenberg, distributing resources at local health facilities and police stations and hosting talks with local youth groups.
We look forward to supporting the youth this Friday as they go out and perform their Mandela Day actions, and we encourage you to do your part in exposing rape culture with us by donating or by joining our #ExposeRapeCulture social media campaign.
Thank you to Rylands Library for giving us the space free of charge, and to Creative Consulting & Development Works for their team’s hard work and support throughout this campaign.