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We work to prevent and eliminate of all forms of violence against women and girls by assisting and empowering survivors, sanctioning perpetrators, seeking justice for victims and working with communities so that they take the responsibility to recognise and denounce violence. Our key pillar is therefore violence prevention with a focus on tackling the root causes of violence such as intergenerational poverty and negative gender norms and stereotypes.

Ilitha Labantu’s work is guided by the national comprehensive policy and normative framework which focuses on the elimination of gender-based violence in line with international standards and the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), primarily Goal 5 on gender equality and goals 1, 10, 16 and 17.

How we make a difference 

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Walk-in service
centre for survivors

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Para-legal services,
court support, and

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Learner-centred outreach support, public awareness, community workshops

Building Bridges programme
closes the gap between life experience
and job readiness

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Providing three months
shelter for abused women
and their children

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Operating provincial food distribution
centre and 100 community-based kitchens

Clinical programme

Clinical Programme

Assessment and referrals

We screen cases to assess their eligibility for Ilitha Labantu services and refer cases that do not meet eligibility criteria to relevant service providers.




We assist survivors of domestic violence and other violations to break the cycle of abuse by dealing with the trauma of abuse and developing coping skills to deal with their problems.


Mobile counselling

Using a customised 16-seater van, we provide counselling services on-the-go in communities. The van forms part of our outreach motorcade, where community members can come in for counselling. We also target isolated communities that do not have immediate access to counselling services.  


Support groups

Support groups foster mutual support and understanding and offer a platform for survivors of domestic abuse or those affected by it to discuss the dynamics of abuse and share their experiences often leading to their growth and development.

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Perhaps the most urgent and crisis-driven aspect of
Ilitha Labantu’s work is to provide counselling to women, children and other vulnerable groups in townships and rural areas who have suffered abuse and violence.
Ilitha Labantu focuses primarily on preventative and survivor support (secondary) measures.


Through our policy and advocacy work, we contribute towards the development of an alternative pro-poor gender policy framework and support awareness raising on violence against women and children. A key component of this work is also the simplification of relevant legal options and procedures – ensuring that we educate our communities about the current laws that protect women, children and the elderly.

Policy and Advocacy

Para-legal activities

We provide legal advice and legal counselling to clients, follow up on client cases and and keep clients updated about the progress of their cases.

Court support

We assist our clients to fill out protection order forms and also provide legal advise at court and referrals to appropriate institutions. Together with our community network, we conduct court picketing especially in rape and femicide cases to support affected families and communities, exert influence on relevant authorities, and draw attention to the continued scourge of violence against women and children.



We regularly hold empowerment and educational
training workshops on relevant pieces of legislation and simple legal and court procedures and educate communities on domestic violence.

Lobbying and advocacy

We consistently place attention on domestic violence to ensure improved integration of domestic violence issues with other issues such crime, policing and social cohesion and to influence policy makers and ensure a coordinated effort to find solutions to assist survivors and end gender-based violence within our communities.

Policy and Advocacy
Outreach and Education

Outreach and Education

Learner-centred outreach support

Our learner-centred outreach support programme forms part of the existing Life Orientation subject at schools. The programme is delivered for both primary and secondary school learners, usually below the age of 18, and tailored for children who live in communities where
violence and abuse have been normalised. The overall aim is to build up youth that are sensitised and socially conscious – being both vigilant and assertive as well as responsible for their actions.  



Public awareness

An informed public is central to creating community support and partnerships to prevent domestic violence, child abuse and neglect. Our messaging is positive - we focus on the many ways communities can support and strengthen families – and is tailored to the perspectives of our target audience.


Community workshops

Our workshops provide community members with the opportunity to learn about domestic violence and abuse and how to prevent it or report it. These sessions are an avenue to develop skills such as public speaking, literacy, and problem solving and boost self-confidence as participants take an active approach to decision making and ending or preventing violence in their sphere of influence. Click here to download a list of our Training Modules

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Through our on-going awareness raising programmes in townships, we aim to create a supportive atmosphere in which people can address interpersonal violence openly


Building Bridges is a unique employment training initiative designed for abused and young women – many of whom have experienced early pregnancy. The programme takes a holistic approach to employment preparation by addressing the individuals’ physical, social, emotional and intellectual needs in the way she approaches learning and employment.

Employment Readiness Building Bridges Programme 

Fosters independence

Assisting women to break the cycle of abuse by moving from being dependent to being self-directed and independent.



Skills development

Providing specific training in “bridging” or transferable skills to improve learning potential and further training or employment opportunities


Job seeking support

Enabling abused women and young mothers to develop and implement their plans for employment and facilitating their ability to support themselves and their families.

Employment Readiness

Food Security 

With food insecurity widely prevalent in its beneficiary communities, Ilitha Labantu made it a priority to ensure people had access to a daily meal. The issue of food security pertains to Sustainable Development Goals 1 (End Poverty) and 2 (End Hunger) and is central to Ilitha Labantu's core mission of supporting women and children. The Comprehensive Food Security Programme was established in 2006 as an enhancement to the already existing services Ilitha Labantu provides, since food remains a significant factor in ensuring the health and well-being of women and children.


Community Based Kitchens

Community based kitchens (CBK) provide communities with direct access to food on a daily basis. The kitchens benefit people who may have to use other forms of social assistance to try and sustain multiple aspects of their lives such as education, shelter, electricity and clothing. CBK provide an immediate relief for those who suffer from hunger and have no other means or very limited means in sustaining themselves. 









Disaster Management
During emergencies and crises we provide support and interventions to ensure that affected communities can regain and rebuild their lives in a quick and safe manner. We also assist with food parcels, family donations and other interventions that are directly and indirectly linked to household food and nutrition, depending on the availability of sponsors and funds. 


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We rely on our holistic community-driven approach to development in creating food secure communities by focusing not only on the immediate provision of meals through food support programmes but also linking in job creation initiatives and rehabilitation services for vulnerable women and children affected by domestic violence who have become food insecure.

Food Security
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