WITS VUVUZELA WINS!!!!!!!!!

THE WINNERS OF THE VICE CHANCELLORS TEAM AWARD FOR TRANSFORMATION: THE WITS VUVUZLA TEAM OF 2013 #TEAMVUVU

THE WINNERS OF THE VICE CHANCELLORS TEAM AWARD FOR TRANSFORMATION: THE WITS VUVUZLA TEAM OF 2013 #TEAMVUVU

For everyone who has been following my blog, you will have noticed that much of my posts involved sexual harassment at Wits University. These were stories my team and I wrote about which helped created awareness about this issue but to also promote change in institutional policy at the university.

A few minutes ago we received an email notifying us that  #teamvuvu 2013 has just been awarded the Vice Chancellor‘s team award for transformation.

We are a team of 17 student journalists who run the campus newspaper as well as studying journalism theory as part of our honours course. It is a great honour to have won this award and moreover right in the beginning of our careers as up and coming journalists.

We will be presented with our award on Friday night at the annual Council dinner. Thanks to all our lecturers’ and all the people who supported our ideas and judgement’s during the coverage of sexual harassment this year.  It was a fabulous and exciting year in the Wits Vuvuzela newsroom.

It is the most rewarding feeling when you receive recognition for the work you have done and just to know that we created a change in institutional policy by our investigative journalism, the feeling is untouchable.

 

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[STORIFY]: Habib tackles Town Hall

Vice Chancellor, Adam Habib held a Town Hall today at Wits University. People gathered at the Great Hall to ask Habib burning questions they needed answers to.

Follow the link below to read the full storify.

http://storify.com/Prelene_Singh/town-hall-gives-habib-the-edge-on-issues

BREAKING: Fired sex pests named

Some content on this page was disabled on October 21, 2015 as a result of a DMCA takedown notice from Anjali Sharma. You can learn more about the DMCA here:

https://en.support.wordpress.com/copyright-and-the-dmca/

Sombre silence in solidarity

Protestors marching from the amic deck to the great hall. Photo: Pheladi Sethusa

Protestors marching from the amic deck to the great hall. Photo: Pheladi Sethusa

Protesters united at Wits University today to show their solidarity for victims of sexual violence in South Africa.At 6am this morning protestors at Rhodes University in Grahamstown gathered in preparation for the Silent protest. The silent protest started at Rhodes 6 years ago where about 100 people joined. This year 1500 protesters marched from Alec Mullins at Rhodes and 1150 showed support at Wits University.

This is Wits’ first year joining in the silent protest and were joined by UKZN, UCT and Fort Hare. The protest kicked off at 8am outside the Matrix where purple t-shirts  were distributed and mouths were taped. People who were gagged were silenced and could not eat, drink or talk until they broke their silence at 3pm.

The march started at the bottom of Amic Deck, proceeded down to the Commerce, Law and Management building. The protesters then marched  up Yale road, turned left at the traffic circle, past the old mutual sports building, the matrix and Umthombo building. It then proceeded outside senate house towards Dulce and came to a stop in the senate house concourse.

During the silent procession, all that could be heard was footsteps of the marchers as they  held hands in symbolic support of each other. Saddened, red eyes could be spotted among the protestors. The thick, grey mist that loomed over campus throughout the day seemed to mirror protestors  feelings of pain and uneasiness, and an overriding sense of anxiety could be felt walking with these rape victims.

Protestors were addressed by three speakers. Lauren Gmeiner, intern psychologist at CCDU,  gave shocking statistics of sexual violence in South Africa. “more than 65 000 sexual crimes were reported in South Africa in 2012. One out of 25 women report sexual violence to the police, according SAPS”. “Rape limits human potential – it silences them,” said Gmeiner.

A rape survivor, Tumi, spoke out about her experience of working through the psychological repercussions of sexual violence. “A woman is raped every 17 seconds in South Africa,” Tumi said.

Actress and activist, Rosie Motene spoke about her experience of physical abuse. Motene took the crowd through the traumatic encounter when she was in university and her boyfriend beat her, leaving her with a cracked rib, a blue eye, bruises and cuts.

Motene said the words of her family and friends, that “It’s not your fault, we are with you,” got her through her struggle. Motene addressed the issue of sexual violence within the university and said, “These stories were swept under the carpet for too long,” and that is the problem. Motene empahsised that students had “a right to be protected.”

“Always make sure your candle is burning bright” said Motene.

Kelly Gillespie, lecturer at the Anthropology department, spoke about sex being pleasurable and not crossing the “bright, red, neon line” of consent. Gillespie said, “ 1 in 3 women will be raped in her lifetime”.

Amid the speakers, 48 rapes between December 27, 2012 and March 14, 2013 were read out to the protestors.

The die-in was then held where people lay down on the floor in silence to give an image of how many people are affected by rape, and how many lose their lives to sexual violence.

A sense of comfort and intimacy filled the room as victims cried, held each other and supported each other. It became a safe place to speak out about their experiences.

The protest ended with  Drama 4 Life students performing a realistc skit of the psychological state of victims post-rape, and the courage it takes to remove the tape and break your silence.

Victims then broke their silence by removing the tape from the mouths and went on to a debrief where they reflected on the events of the day.