Non-governmental organisations, police, clergy and members of several congregations held a mass prayer event to mark the end of the 16 Days of Activism for No Violence Against Women and Children.
The event, organised by the Cesvi Foundation, was held on the last day of the global campaign, on Thursday December 10, and attended by hundreds of people who prayed for an end to gender-based violence.
At the three-hour gathering at Browns Farm Stadium those gathered called for the campaign to be observed 365 days a year.
Religious leaders championing the programme prayed and lit a candle for victims of crime – and gender-based violence in particular.
It was a day of singing and dancing while at the end of the programme, community members also received food parcels sponsored by Gift of the Givers.
Speaker after speaker called for an end to gender-based violence and the murder of children.
Answered Prayers founder Reverend Anita Pamla called on men to stand and be counted in the fight. She said men are needed so to end the violence against women and children.
“The fight should continue 365 days a year. It is also time for men to stand up and be counted in the fight,” she said.
Allie Sabblay of Gift of the Givers said with Nyanga police servicing a vast and complex community, plagued by violent crimes, there was a need for a multi-stakeholder approach.
He added that Brown’s Farm had been identified as a hot spot for domestic violence.
“The local police station, Nyanga SAPS Social Crime Prevention, kicked off their 16 days of Activism program in Brown’s Farm to create awareness amongst victims and perpetrators alike.The message is clear that, with a collaboration between SAPS, Community and Stakeholders, no violence against women and children will be tolerated,” he said.
Nyanga station commander Bridier Vuyisile Ncata made a call to women to bail out of toxic marriages. He said women were killed and murdered for wanting to save something that could not be saved. “There is life out there. Please do not stay in relationships that are not working. The world is big enough to get another working relationship,” he said.