SLF continues to support the efforts of the Delft Safety Group (DSG), who, together with other community based organisations, are taking the lead in advocating for improved safety and other positive social changes in various areas in Delft. The group’s work builds upon a 3-year collaborative partnership with SLF team, exploring how a participatory approach can foster citizen led contributions towards improving safety and security in Delft.
Our current project with the DSG aims to continue opening safe spaces for engagement to occur between marginalised groups and other stakeholders including peers, community, business, service providers, funders and government. The work recognises the importance of providing opportunities for citizens to speak out in inclusive and responsive spaces, to break silence and convey a collective citizen perspective around what is really happening in Delft. These opportunities are part and parcel of the journey to enable those who are most marginalized to move away from experiences of exclusion and fear, and to build sustainable and inclusive relationships with government and other duty bearers.
On Friday the 24th of November 2017, SLF and the DSG were invited to participate in a 16 Days of Activism Programme with Provincial Parliament. SLF proudly represented the marginalized voices of the Delft community whilst wearing #DelftLivesMatter T-shirts. The objective of this event was to focus on 16 Days of no violence against woman and children. The event allowed various community organisations to network towards future collaborations/partnerships and to engage in gender based work. Organisations were invited to exhibit their work and conduct short presentations. The SLF/DSG collaborative will be presenting their work at an upcoming open day in Parliament on the 9th of December 2017.
And once again, the DSG were invited to present at the Safety and Violence Initiative (SaVI) conference, on the theme of Preventing violence and promoting safety in fragile and insecure environments’. The conference took place from 27-28 November at the River Club in Observatory, Cape Town. This DSG presentation included the first public viewing of “Be the Voice”, one of three collectively made films produced by the group this year that speaks specifically about the risks and the vulnerabilities that community leaders face at the ground level while working in places like Delft. The remaining two films highlight the life threatening challenges that young people continue to face while living in Delft, and the resilience of the human spirit – against all odds. Both of these factors play a key role in driving citizen action against the atrocities and inequalities that occur in their everyday lives.
– By Farida Ryklief and Rory Liedeman