Local women help abused

2015-05-19 06:00
The team of the Mitchell’s Plain Network Opposing Abuse continues after almost 20 years to empower the community to stand strong against violence in the area. 
PHOTO: 
Samantha Lee

The team of the Mitchell’s Plain Network Opposing Abuse continues after almost 20 years to empower the community to stand strong against violence in the area. PHOTO: Samantha Lee

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A group of women are giving back to empower victims of abuse.

The Mitchell’s Plain Network Opposing Abuse, based in Beacon Valley, has been working in the community for close to 20 years.

Mareldea Sonday, manager of the network, says it is a specialised organisation in Mitchell’s Plain.

“We are one of a kind,” she says.

The network runs several programmes, including a support group for those affected by abuse, lay counselling at court for those dealing with protection orders and anger management and bullying workshops at schools.

The network also recently held a Mothers’ Day bash at the Beaconvale Frail Care Centre.

“It was great to see all the women interact with each other at the event. They were treated like queens and we wanted them to feel special,” Sonday says.

Another successful network initiative is the court project. Coordinator Sahida Abrahams says the network helped about 3 000 men and women with protection orders last year.

“We are all about empowering the victims to inform them about their rights because many of them don’t know that they have certain powers,” she says.

One ongoing project is the support group for people affected by abuse, even those not directly abused. Fieldworker Te’chiah September says it is open to all.

“The support group is open, so people can come when they want to, so every week we see new people. On average about 15 people attend each session,” she says.

A woman who attends the support group says she has been given the tools to cope with her abuse.

“I attend for my grandchildren. I was not abused but I am affected by abuse,” she says. Counsellor Nazli Mohiedeen says she has grown leaps and bounds.

“She does not let it get to her. She applies the tools taught to her everyday life and that helps her cope,” she says.

The support group is held at the Beaconvale Frail Care Centre on Tuesdays from 10:00 to 12:00.

V

The Mitchell’s Plain Network Opposing Abuse is also in need. To find out how you can help them or if you would like more information call 021 376 4788 or email mpnetwork@vodamail.co.za

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