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Safer Together Women's Day

Safer Together chair Melanie Burke with three generations of “gogos (grandmothers) and girls” in one family, Oniwe Noxolo (mother), Chwayita Noxolo (daughter), Sylvia Noxolo (grandmother) all from Vrygrond.

Safer Together chair Melanie Burke with three generations of “gogos (grandmothers) and girls” in one family, Oniwe Noxolo (mother), Chwayita Noxolo (daughter), Sylvia Noxolo (grandmother) all from Vrygrond.

Safer Together held a Women’s Day get-together in Vrygrond on 9 August. Well-known writer Sindiwe Magona (and SynNovation associate) challenged women in the community to take initiative to ensure that all young people attend school – otherwise we allow them to become “skollies”, and the risk is that they will grow up into criminals.  She was speaking at the event arranged  by Safer Together in collaboration with the Vrygrond Community Development Trust. The event was attended by sixty-plus women of all ages, mostly from Vrygrond, Marina da Gama, Muizenberg and St James.  SynNovation team members Melanie and Truida are active in the NGO that works for community safety.


Keynote speaker Sindiwe Magona and Truida Prekel (Safer Together founder) share a laugh as Truida thanks Sindiwe for the challenging, yet entertaining talk she gave – putting across much practical wisdom.


Keynote speaker Sindiwe Magona and Truida Prekel (Safer Together founder) share a laugh as Truida thanks Sindiwe for the challenging, yet entertaining talk she gave – putting across much practical wisdom.
 

If the Government spent more money in ensuring education of our young people worked, they would not have to spend so much on keeping people in prison!  Magona also appealed to the women not to give money to young people or street-corner beggars, as that was the surest way of keeping them in dire poverty, and on the streets.  “Rather give to registered organisations that rehabilitate people, and help them to improve their own situation.”  She also criticised the child grant system, giving young women “too little money to look after a child”, but the grant encourages them to have more children.  It keeps them dependent and in dire poverty – instead of helping them to take responsibility for their own lives.  Sindiwe, who grew up in Blouvlei near Vrygrond and was then forcibly removed to Guguletu, shared life experiences, from poverty and being stranded and desperate at 23 with three children, when her husband had left her, to a career at the United Nations in New York, and now being an internationally recognised writer living in Marina Da Gama. She credits her determination to keep improving her education for having guided her success.  She said her mother had told her, “Education is the one husband that can never leave you”, and urged women to improve their education.  “Even if you are 55, it can still make a huge difference in your and your family’s life”.