June 2013 is my last month as Executive Director of SANGONeT and as part of our special focus on NGOs this month, and celebrating the work and achievements of NGOs in South Africa, I will be running my final race as part of the annual SANGONeT "No Pain No Gain" fundraising and awareness-raising campaign.
African Union Member States
Re: 50th Anniversary and Advancing Justice for Grave Crimes
To Foreign Ministers of African Union member states:
We, the undersigned African civil society organisations and international organisations with a presence in Africa, working on human rights and international criminal justice, are pleased to congratulate the Organisation of African Unity (OAU), now the African Union (AU), on the occasion of its 50th Anniversary.
The Right2Know Campaign calls on all freedom-loving South Africans and democrats across the world to contact President Zuma and appeal to him to stop the Secrecy Act and either return the Bill to Parliament for redrafting, or send it directly to the Constitutional Court for review.
In 2012 we introduced a "NGO Profiles" feature on the NGO Pulse Portal in conjunction with our annual “No Pain No Gain” fundraising and awareness-raising campaign.
The Unit for Human Rights Mainstreaming & Capacity Building (Stellenbosch University) was founded to enhance the capacity of government officials and people working with human rights to enable them to better understand what human rights mainstreaming entail. During the past few years we have become more and more concerned with the implementation of human rights in the Western Cape that lacked a coherent approach. Even more worrying is the deteriorating national political context which shapes the discourse around human rights. In many cases there is now a counter-discou
The Papillon Foundation, founded in 2002, is doing amazing work in the community improvement fields. Papillon runs several accredited, educational, social outreach projects such as computer end-user training in a partnership with the International Computer Driving License (ICDL). 2 929 needy community members have thus far graduated from the computer courses. 4 219 community members have also graduated from the English language tuition courses that Papillon run in a partnership with University of the Witwatersrand.
Mail & Guardian’s headline for Gerry Elsdon’s suspension reads: ‘The South African Red Cross's governing board has suspended former beauty queen and TV personality Gerry Elsdon with immediate effect’. Elsdon is not simply a pretty face but the chief executive officer of Cinnamon Communication as well as the tuberculosis goodwill Ambassador for the International Federation of Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies, among other things.
For many South African’s the Bill of Rights is only vaguely known or understood, but in Rustenburg the team developing the new integrated public transport system – Rustenburg Rapid Transport (RRT) – are intimately aware of how something as basic as good public transport can support the true expression of South Africa’s Bill of Rights.
By Nachilala Nkombo, ONE Africa - Deputy Director
2012 has been a tough year for civil society. Those funding cuts that we’d been warned of since the crash in 2008, were keenly felt. The President's Emergency Plan For AIDS Relief (PEPFAR) wrapped up its second five year programme, the Europeans curtailed their investments, the United Kingdom Department of International Development (DIFID) restructured. The retraction in international funding was exacerbated by instability in local funding as the National Lottery in trying to get its house in order, struggled to deliver on its grant mandate.
A couple of weeks ago, I was visiting Trudie, a child care worker in one of our trauma houses for young girls. As manager of childcare services I have a pretty good idea of each child’s situation and what they require in terms of care. Jeanette, a 13-year-old girl, who has been with us for just over a year was hovering in the background and trying to get our attention. I suggested to Trudie that she attend to the child. She turned around, gave Jeanette one look and ordered: “Jeanette, go to your room at once.” I was stunned. Why so harsh? And more, why did the child obey?
The phrase ‘it starts with the person in the mirror’ is often used as a call to action. A way of telling us we should be the change we want to see. It’s a cliché that’s inspired many into doing some great things, be it cleaning up their environment or even volunteering for a good cause. But I believe we only grasp the phrase at surface level, ignoring the deeper meaning it possesses.
The Minimum Standards on Shelters for Abused Women recognises that ‘shelters represent an absolutely critical point of crisis intervention’ and places a duty on the Department of Social Development to ensure that shelter interventions are able to meet basic needs and provide support, counselling and skills development to women. In order to deliver quality services however, shelters must have adequate resources.
In the past few weeks many NGOs have discovered that their “NPO registration status” with the NPO Directorate has changed to 'de-registered' or 'non-compliant'
Non-Governmental Organisation (NGO) performance audits provide an impartial assessment of the compliance level of an NGO with international best practices and establish a framework towards continuous improvement.
I have, after a while of not serving on the Board of a Public Benefit Organisation (PBO), looked at the South Africa Revenue Services (SARS) Guideline for PBOs. Of course the major change regarding trading will have many positive and negative repercussions.
I have attended many conferences, where various organisations provided attendees with well covered and attractive annual reports. These reports are also very often made available on their websites, making them accessible to a larger audience. This effort aimed at encouraging transparency and accountability is well-intended and applauded. It is essential that the nonprofit sector not only preach accountability, but also walk the talk, leading by example.
One of my favourite storybook characters as a child was Mrs Tiggywinkle from The Tale of Mrs Tiggywinkle by Beatrix Potter. She was a hedgehog who miraculously reinvented herself daily - without ever compromising her true identity - into an industrious entrepreneur who ran a laundry service! There she was bustling across the rolling green hills of the English countryside, a world that for me existed only in storybooks, the conversations of my parents and birthday cards from relatives.
The Centre for HIV/AIDS Networking (HIVAN) has a long history of working in the field of HIV and AIDS and TB: