A year ago on 5 December 2016, the Western Cape High Court declared conditions in Pollsmoor Remand Detention Facility to be in breach of the Government’s constitutional obligations to detain inmates in conditions consistent with human dignity.
This is just one human rights achievement which has been captured in a newly released 16-minute video, which celebrates the achievements of Sonke Gender Justice since its founding in 2006. The video also tells the story of the nearly 250 people who have worked at the NGO as well as the people whose lives have been impacted by Sonke’s work towards a world in which men, women and children can enjoy equitable, healthy and happy relationships that contribute to the development of just and democratic societies.
Sonke has been working to advance gender justice in South Africa and the region for more than a decade. During this time Sonke has:
Of Sonke’s growth over the past decade, Sisonke Msimang, author and Sonke Chairperson, 2008 to 2012, says in the video: “I’ve appreciated watching Sonke grow over time and evolving – because South Africa has evolved – into a space where women and men lead Sonke now and are asking questions that require men to change.”
The video highlights Sonke’s important work in mobilising communities, promoting gender equitable norms, holding public figures and institutions to account, calling for a National Strategic Plan on gender-based violence, using strategic litigation to further human rights, advancing child rights and positive parenting, our work in the region and our work to increase and improve HIV services for men.
Sonke’s 2016/17 Annual Report highlights the important work done during the period March 2016 to end February 2017. Included is Sonke and Laywers for Human Rights’ landmark victory in which conditions at Pollsmoor Remand Facility were found to be unconstitutional as well as our work with other civil society partners in attaining justice for Nosipho Mandleleni who was murdered at the hands of her partner, ex-ANC Youth League leader, Patrick Wisani.
The video and Annual Report are released as Sonke celebrates some significant achievements of the past few months:
Sonke’s multifaceted work on prison reform has included a strategic mix of community education and mobilisation, legal and policy advocacy, communications and mass media and ongoing research.
According to Dean Peacock, Co-Founder and Co-Executive Director of Sonke, “These awards are testimony to both the effectiveness of multi-pronged and ambitious strategy and a dedicated staff willing to stay the course over the long term no matter the challenges.”
These awards build on a number of significant human rights achivements, which indicate that Sonke’s work is achieving real impact in South Africa and globally.
Against this backdrop of human rights victories and recognition of Sonke’s impact, we are proud to share the Sonke 10 Year Anniversary video and our latest Annual Report – both of which illustrate the organisational energy which makes these victories possible.
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