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Project Funding for Southern African Organizations working to End Violence Against Women

As part of its Young Women’s Voices Campaign 2010, the Open Society Initiative for Southern Africa (OSISA) is inviting young women’s networks, organisations and initiatives in Southern Africa to submit proposals for campaigns and activities during the 2010 16 Days of Activism against Violence against Women.

Deadline for submissions: September 30, 2010.

OSISA has always supported the 16 Days of Activism against “No Violence Against Women”, a global Campaign which runs from 25 November to 10 December every year. The 2010 theme is Structures of Violence: Defining the Intersections of Militarism and Violence against Women and OSISA seeks to support young women’s initiatives to speak about and put on the national agendas how the ideology of militarism affects them
as young women.

Militaristic values and attitudes have perpetuated armed conflicts in our region, especially in parts of Angola and eastern parts of the DRC, and not-so-armed conflicts and crises in Swaziland and Zimbabwe. There is generally an increased tendency to use force, coercion and violence to enforce and protect economic and political interests, with negative repercussions especially on young women, who are doubly made vulnerable by their gender and age. In many countries rape of women and girls has been one of the obvious manifestations of militaristic attitudes, especially in contexts of conflict and war.

While the majority of Southern African countries are not directly engaged in armed conflict – except for parts of a few – militaristic beliefs and influences abound, and do affect young women in the relatively peaceful countries, as their governments often prioritise defence and purchase and sell of weapons, over social services and employment creation for young women and other populations. For instance, it is true that most countries in Southern Africa – as elsewhere on the continent – invariably commit more resources on their national budgets to defence and related portfolios, at the expense of health and HIV and AIDS, education, employment creation, (issues that are of most concern to young people generally, and young women in particular). In addition, militaristic beliefs have also driven governments to even commit resources to send troops, produce arms and
weapons, and invest in the militaries of neighbouring and foreign nations; all in the name of solidarity and protecting regional or continental peace. This is a serious concern for young people who, as a result, lose their future, as opportunities for them to gain a meaningful education, protection from HIV and AIDS, economic and job security are seriously compromised.

OSISA seeks to support young women in Southern Africa to take advantage of the 16 Days Global Campaign to raise their voices and speak-out about these (and other violations of young women’s rights) in their respective countries and at regional levels. Support will be given to organisations/networks and initiatives led by young women, or initiatives that focus on young women’s issues, and provide them with a platform to make their voices

Support will be given towards proposals that seek to cover a wide range of thematic issues, including:

* Articulating and raising awareness on the various manifestations of militarism and its impact on young women;

* Demanding action and rolling back militarism and promoting a culture of democracy and non-violence and respect for women’s rights;

* Projects that construct a discourse that clarifies the links between young women’s sexual and reproductive health and rights and HIV and AIDS, and ensure that these issues are part of the core business of women’s movements;

* Initiatives that recognise and highlight economic violence and economic injustice that inevitably results from militarised States and nations;

* Innovative and creative interventions scaling up knowledge production, sharing and management efforts among young women’s networks within and across countries;

* Efforts that ensure progressive law and constitutional reforms, for the advancement of young women’s rights;

* Creative and innovative ideas to highlight the impact of militarisation on education (including issues of targeting of schools for use for military purposes (both as bases as well as places of recruitment for child-soldiers and sex slaves)

* Projects that capture and articulate the violation of women , as is the case in countries such as DRC and others; and girls’ rights within countries experiencing armed conflicts and crises of governance and those in transitions (Swaziland, Angola, DRC, Zimbabwe), and creatively come up with advocacy efforts towards alleviating the challenges young women face in such contexts; and

* Projects that seek to utilise media, especially new forms of media and communications technologies for social mobilisation and advocacy against militarism and other forms of violation of young women’s rights.

In addition to the above thematic focus requirements, support will also be given towards;

* Innovative ideas for coalition and movement-building across sectors and among all women and articulating young women’s rights gaps and concerns and making recommendations for addressing these;

* Structured exchange of experiences, lessons and strategies towards sustaining vibrancy within young women’s movements within and across countries;

* Efforts to mobilize and amplify young women’s voices in the women’s movements in the region, thereby reducing the generational gap between the young and older activists on the movement and amplify the calls for a young women’s rights agenda as part of the consolidation of democracy in the countries;

* Initiatives to mobilize and engage young women in rural and farming communities and constituencies, so as to widen young women’s movement-bases; and

* Projects that promote cross-sectoral dialogue and synergizing among the young women’s movements, to maximize the benefits of the often limited resources available for women’s rights programming.

Who can apply?

Organisations, networks and formations that focus on young women’s rights; initiatives led by and for young women; social justice formations/organisations with demonstrable work with young women. Only organisations from Angola, Botswana, DRC, Lesotho, Malawi, Mozambique, Namibia, Swaziland, Zambia and Zimbabwe need apply.

Project Funding

Proposals should include detailed budgets of up to US$25,000. An organisation/network can only submit one proposal for this round of funding. Projects with budgets exceeding US$25,000 will NOT be considered.

The Best 3 Proposals will Receive Awards! (in addition to the requested grant)

This “16 Days of Young Women Voices Campaign” is part of a broader OSISA Young Women’s Voice Campaign launched this year, which includes a two-week feminism course, a regional young women’s festival, a newsletter and blog among other activities. The 16 Days of Young Women’s Voices Campaign will be launched during the Southern African Young Women’s Festival scheduled for Harare in October 2010. Part of the Festival programme will be dedicated towards presentation of the selected top three 16 Days projects submitted by young women, as a way to motivate and encourage others. A panel of judges will select the qualifying 10 proposals in advance of the Festival, and announce the best three, and these will automatically be funded under this Fund. The other selected projects will also be funded, but will not receive awards.

For more information on this Fund, please contact Tsitsi Mukamba at tsitsim(at)
or Phone: +27 11 5875000 or +27 836615600 (Tsitsi)


adediane's picture

Any Funds for West Africa?

What's in it for counties in other parts of Africa- Nigeria, for instance? One of my mentors has been itching to do a film on Violence Against Women in Nigeria. Would appreciate if you could furnish me with information on what funds she can access? Thanks.

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