In keeping with the global campaign of the 16 Days of Activism Against Women and Children Abuse, the Sahara Shelter for abused women and children in conjunction with the Phoenix Child Welfare recently took to the streets of Phoenix to raise awareness on the pressing issue of children and women abuse.

Joined by various stakeholders and concerned members of the community dressed in red T-shirts, the local organisations walked from KFC Phoenix to Spar and back, creating an awareness amongst the public.

Speaking to The Phoenix Tabloid, Sahara Shelter manager, Nadia Munsamy said, “Seeing that violence against women and children is so rife and the statistics are so high especially in Phoenix, it was paramount that we go out there and create an awareness within the community.
We wanted to send out a strong message to perpetrators that we know that it’s happening so they too can be educated and stop abuse on women and children. We also wanted to inform victims that there is a place of safety at the Sahara Shelter, where mothers and their children in crisis can get counselling.”

Social worker at the Sahara, Annie Varaden said, “Having worked with so many women in our community as a therapist, there is so much of emotional secrets and baggage that these women carry with them. There are so many women in our community that are living in secret behind closed doors and the portrayal they present in public is
often not the hurt woman that lives at home.

“My message to these women is that, don’t keep abuse a secret for so long, don’t let it become toxic and hurt you and your children. You can speak up and get the help you need to rebuild your self-esteem and life.”

The Sahara Shelter is a place of safety and healing for abused women and their children. It is open 24 hours for admission purposes and provides short term accommodation. It also provides therapeutic counselling for abused women and play therapy for their children. Admission is done via the local Child Welfare (during office hours) or the South African Police Services (after hours). Sahara has 24 hour security and works in partnership with the SAPS to ensure the protection and safety of women and children.

For more information on Sahara Shelter contact 031 500 3671.