Singer and founder of “Funk It I’m Walking” Nomsa Mazwai joins thousands of South Africans in the fight against gender-based violence.
For the 16 Days of Activism Against Violence on Women and Children campaign, “Funk It I’m Walking”, in partnership with the Gauteng Department for Community Safety, creates a safe space for women, children and families in their communities.
On a monthly basis, “Funk It I’m Walking” mapped out safe walking routes that will allow women and girls to walk freely while jogging, visiting local restaurants or going to the library.
In conversation with Mazwai, who is at the helm of this great initiative, she said: “The meaning of “Funk It I’m Walking” is no matter what happens, I am going to exercise my right to walk freely in South Africa free of violence, without feeling anxious.
“It means I am going to ensure that the South African I want to live in becomes a reality.“
She added: “The realisation that, as women, we are always in a state of anxiety when walking anywhere in South Africa. Even in the most rural villages, one can be the victim of rape, we are not free.
“Having noted that injustice, that, women are not enjoying this newfound freedom of 1994, I took action. I started the initiative which now how partnerships with the Gauteng Department for Community Safety and we work together creating safer communities, where women can walk at any time of day in any condition.”
In addition to “Funk It I’m Walking” event, there will be an art exhibition at the Soweto Theatre.
Titled “Before You Kill Us”, the exhibition will showcase the creative work of local female artists.
“The artists were briefed to create and bring works that depict us in our humaneness. We are mothers, we are sisters, we are lovers, we are breadwinners, we are not victims, we are not dead, we are human beings.
“This collection of works makes tangible the real impact of GBV by showing what is actually being killed, what is having acts of violence thrust upon it,” Mazwai explained.
On what she hopes to achieve through the project, Mazwai admitted: “My hope is that after a year of monthly walks in this area, this community will understand the value of safety.
“Safety is valuable and I want our communities to start unlocking this value by demanding that it be safe enough for a woman to walk at any time of day in any condition.”
The “Before You Kill Us” exhibition and safe walkway event kicks off at the Soweto Theatre, on Thursday, December 3, at 6pm.
Walks are held every first Thursday of the month.
For more information and to register for the free event and monthly safe walks, visit “Funk It I’m Walking”.
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