Whole World Women Association provides support and services for abused women and advocates for their human rights. There is a large number of refugee, migrant, and asylum seeking women that have experienced extensive trauma and who are victims of abuse. Many of these women are not comfortable going to the police to report abusive situations and instead turn to WWWA for support.
Our employees are trained in family support and counseling and provide a safe place for women to seek counseling, advice, and mediation. Working on a case by case basis, if we cannot provide the assistance they need we refer these women and families to our partner organizations who can better address their specific needs. WWWA also participates in the Stop Violence Against Women campaign that aims to raise awareness in the Western Cape about the high rates of violence against women.
Refugee, asylum seeking, and migrant women who are unemployed and struggling to support their families are able to take a series of courses that will teach them to sew their own garments and also teaches them how to start and manage their own business. These courses enables these women to gain the necessary skills to create and sell their own garments, enabling them to become self-reliant.
One of South Africa’s biggest problems in refugee resettlement is xenophobia. WWWA tackles this by building solidarity between refugees and local women. Building Bridges is a social integration project that seeks to build a genuine friendship between refugee and migrant women with native women in South Africa.
The project brings together local women and migrant/refugee women through social events and women’s dialogues promoting social cohesion and solidarity among them. In these dialogues, women talk about their commonalities and differences, get to learn each other’s history, their origins, and their struggles as women.
Women from both communities have also built friendships and shared family ties (children of South African and migrant women even stay in each other’s homes). Another positive aspect of this program is an exchange of skills, learning from others, as well as sharing knowledge.
WWWA participates in the Stop Violence Against Women campaign that aims to raise awareness in the Western Cape about the high rates of violence against women. We also hold workshops and support groups where women can safely and openly discuss human rights, abuse, women’s issues, and any other challenges they may be facing and get the opportunity to share solutions, ideas, and give support. WWWA works to educate women on their human rights and make them aware of all the resources available to them.
Many of the refugees moving to South Africa from other African countries have limited knowledge and information and HIV/AIDS. To respond to this need, WWWA has developed a comprehensive HIV/AIDS awareness program. The main objective of this program is to educate women on their human rights, including sexual reproductive health rights, as well as HIV/AIDS education, information, and prevention.
This campaign aims to build informed, healthy, and AIDS free communities through campaigns to increase education, awareness, and communication about the disease, provide mobile wellness clinics, creating a peer education training, and giving referrals for testing and treatment. HIV/AIDS support groups will be available for both the affected and the infected women in the community.
The awareness program also tackles issues such as lower school dropout rates, gender-based violence, child prostitution, child labor, and human trafficking. Working on these cross-cutting issues ensures that WWWA uses community-based approaches to address forced migration.
WWWA is in a unique position to provide these services to the refugee/migrant communities in that it’s peer educators speak all different languages and are able to reach the overlooked refugee/migrant/asylum seeking communities who may miss out on this crucial information.