Tearfund has been awarded winner of the International aid and development category at the 2018 Charity Awards for its sexual and gender-based violence work in South Africa.
The Tearfund project is based in KwaZulu-Natal where a high proportion of men admit to perpetrating gender-based violence (an enormous 46 per cent). The project is built around what survivors themselves saw as priorities: to have a safe space to reflect and heal, to be able share their stories with others who had faced a similar ordeal, and for their leaders to speak out on the issue.
The project has been running for just over three years and is now a locally-owned, shaped and sustained movement supporting 547 survivors, with 21 volunteering as “champions” across 150 safe spaces.
Some 90 percent of survivors said they had spoken out for the first time, improvements were recorded to survivors’ quality of life across a range of physical and mental indicators, and engagement with the issue among faith leaders increased. Tearfund is now exploring how it can support similar movements in other countries.
The Charity Awards celebrate and highlight best practice across the sector. Run by Civil Society Media, the annual awards programme helps to identify, recognise and reward those organisations doing exceptional work in all areas of charitable activity.
Nigel Harris, CEO at Tearfund says: “Sexual and gender-based violence is one of the most damaging problems within societies across the world. This new project equipped and empowered survivors to work together, support each other and bring about transformation in their own lives. We are honoured that the Charity Awards have recognised the importance of putting people at the heart of international aid and development work, and are excited to see this new model being used elsewhere.”
For further information on Tearfund please contact: Ann Hallam, Tearfund on 020 3906 3146 or 07929 330366
Tearfund is a Christian relief and development agency and a member of the Disasters’ Emergency Committee. Founded in 1968, Tearfund has been working around the world for 50 years responding to disasters and helping lift communities out of poverty. For more information about the work of Tearfund, please visit www.tearfund.org.