B-WISE TikTok Panel Discussion Tackles Gender-Based Violence

Panel discussion on Gender Based Violence in South African Youth

In a powerful and thought-provoking discussion, a panel of experts on gender-based violence (GBV) gathered at the SPACE in Melville, Johannesburg on Wednesday (29 Nov), to address the critical issue of GBV among South African youth. The panel, hosted by Thabiso Mokoena from B-Wise, featured panellists Fikile Ntanzi from LoveLife Trust, National Manager Media Wise, Itumeleng Letsoalo from the Soul City Institute, and Tshepiso Machabaphala.

The panellists delved into the pervasiveness of GBV in South Africa, highlighting the devastating impact it has on individuals, families, and communities. They also explored the challenges faced by young people in speaking out about GBV and the stigma associated with seeking help.

Government’s Plans to Combat GBV

Government effort to combat GBV was also acknowledged, including the implementation of the National Strategic Plan on Gender-Based Violence and Femicide (NSP-GBVF). The panellists emphasized the need for continued and sustained government commitment to addressing GBV, particularly in terms of funding, policy implementation, and awareness-raising campaigns.

Represented organisations also showcased their work in combating GBV. LoveLife Trust, for instance, provides comprehensive sexuality education programs that promote healthy relationships and address GBV prevention. Media Wise focuses on using media as a tool for social change, creating content that challenges gender stereotypes and promotes gender equality. The Soul City Institute implements community-based interventions that address the root causes of GBV, including poverty, unemployment, and substance abuse.

Challenges in Combatting GBV

The panellists acknowledged the challenges faced in combatting GBV, including:

*Normalisation of GBV – GBV is often normalized in South African societies, making it difficult for victims to speak out and for perpetrators to be held accountable.

*Lack of access to resources – Many victims of GBV lack access to the resources they need to seek help, such as legal aid, medical care, and psychosocial support.

*Fear of retaliation – Victims of GBV often fear retaliation from perpetrators or their families, deterring them from reporting incidents.

Breaking Stigma, Building Resilience

Despite these challenges, the panellists remained optimistic about the possibility of breaking the stigma surrounding GBV and building resilience among South African youth. They emphasized the importance of education, awareness-raising, and community engagement as key strategies in combating GBV.

The B-WISE TikTok panel discussion on GBV was a valuable platform for raising awareness and promoting dialogue on this critical issue. Panellists provided insights into the government’s and individual organizations’ plans to combat the scourge, while also acknowledging the challenges that lie ahead. By breaking the stigma surrounding GBV and building resilience among young people, we can work towards a future where all South Africans feel safe and respected.

By Lebohang Ntamane

SA Positive News