Women Leadership Centre to help San community reduce domestic violence
The Women Leadership Centre (WLC) launched their new project titled, Reducing Family Violence in San Communities, which is being implemented by community leaders in six San communities in Namibia.
The centre will be working in Omega 1, Mu’ciku, Ndama, Tsintsabis, Drimiopsis and Skoonheid in partnership with the Embassy of Finland.
The centre during the week said community leaders received training on forms and types of family violence, the impact of family violence on people’s lives, the causes, attitudes, behaviours and cultural norms that are driving family violence in San communities, conflict resolution skills and strengthening cultural pride as a protective factor against violence.
WLC Director, Elizabeth !Khaxas said this is the first project in which the WLC is including men to work alongside the young women leaders in their communities, they will reach out to boys, young and adult men on the prevention of violence.
Deputy Minister for Marginalised Communities in the Presidency and Deputy Minister for the Ministry of Gender Equality, Poverty Eradication and Social Welfare, Royal J.K. /Ui/o/oo commended the centre on the many years of work with San young women and encouraged them to aim high with their studies and present their people in parliament.
Ambassador of Finland, Leena Viljanen who officially launched the project said that ending violence was important for community development because no one should live in fear in their own home.
Maria Garises from Drimiopsis and Aulleria Muyakuyi from Ndama, a San settlement near Rundu, both complained of San children being taken by families of other ethnic groups with promises of sending them to school while they are forced into child labour on farms and in households.
“This is a form of violence and we experience so much violence and we experience so much violence every day of our lives from non-San people. We were a peaceful people in the past, but have learnt violent behaviours from other groups who dispossessed us of our lands and livelihood,” they added.
Patricia Dinyando and Margret Kamba from Omega 1 raised the challenges they and other San students are facing in accessing scholarships for further education. “It seems that scholarships for Masters and PhD programmes are not for us and allowances for San students at COSDEC institutions were paid late and arbitrarily cut, forcing the student to drop out,” they emphasised.
Louise Gaeses called for granting of scholarships for studies at smaller tertiary institutions that are more accessible to San students than UNAM and NUST.