Johannesburg, 23 September 2015
The ZwaKala meeting for Coordinators and Directors of Community Based Organsations (CBO) was facilitated by Dolar Vasani on Monday, 14 September 2015. The meeting brought together CBOs that are part of the ZwaKala prject from three provinces. Expectations were high as the participants, from Limpopo, Gauteng and North West, eloquently voiced their understanding of ZwaKala in their human rights work in their communities and the importance of the project within their organisations. The participants also detailed their challenges as organisations and the need to use ZwaKala as a means to improve their human rights knowledge and media skills.
Participants were vocal about the success of the meeting. One participant reflected, “The sessions were very important. I learnt a lot from people from different provinces about how they are addressing their challenges and successes.”
The issue of Trans* visibility was also raised as many felt that Trans* issues were isolated and left marginalised within their communities. It was agreed that Trans* voices will be included in the project as ZwaKala represents the entire umbrella and does not marginalise any group.
The meeting wrapped up with participants creating the space for engagement with Iranti and other organisations within the ZwaKala project, to work together and “rise up”.
Founder Directors of Zwakala
ZwaKala participants making action plans
Zwakala participants doing evaluation sheets
The next steps for the project is a capacity and media development plan which will categorise the level of capacity within each organisation and how ZwaKala can help capacitate these individuals and organisations. Below are additional comments from participants:
“The meeting was important because I’ve been able to learn how LGBTI groups could be strengthened in terms of undertaking advocacy effectively.”
“The meeting was valuable as it shows progress, passion and commitment.”
“Learning from other organisations and the Founder/Directors helped me recognise my own shortcomings.”
“I was given the opportunity to talk and to learn from fellow participants.”