We at Lesedi la Batho believe that in order to empower vulnerable women, we must first empower their men, which is why we were thrilled to welcome our partners at Community Media Trust to host the first Man2Man workshop at our community centre.
The workshop is aimed at men of ages 15-47 years old, and creates a safe space to talk about and inform young men on key topics such as including Condom Usage, Voluntary and Medical Male Circumcision, HIV Testing and Gender Based Violence.
Gender-based violence is a key social issue in our community, and many others in rural South Africa - one which we simply must do our best to address and improve. Lesedi la Batho provides support for vulnerable women including teenage mothers, victims of GBV, commercial sex workers and unemployed single mothers. We offer free skills training courses leading to job placements, psycho-social support through one-on-one and group sessions, and social relief such as food parcels and material donations. We are passionate about also reaching the men in our community, to provide access to practical information with the vision to see them be better men for their women. Thank you, CMT, for taking our hands in bringing this vision to reality at Lesedi la Batho Community Centre!
So, what did the boys have to say about the Man2Man Workshop? "I learnt to put myself in the position of a woman for a change - how they feel and get hurt by men. I promise to protect and speak up when I see someone doing wrong towards them." - Bruce
"I learned a lot about how to protect myself properly during sexual intercourse. It was also interesting to learn about the benefits of circumcision. We as men should regularly attend this kind of session; it was good to share our voices together as men." - Onkabestwe
"People living with HIV/AIDS are human like us, and we can live normally with them. I am going to share the knowledge I learned with my friends and other peers because it will change their lives for the better." - Mpho
"It was a blessing to be part of the man to man session and safe space, it was a huge eye opener for me. This kind of session should be hosted on a regular basis - its what men in our community need!" - Tshepiso