The rationale behind Sebenza is to create employment for women in rural areas (or elsewhere), in particular married women/partners within households. It is about giving them optimal opportunities to earn an income and become financially self-dependent, which makes a huge difference within households where women are mostly dependent on the male breadwinner, causing all kinds of social ills.
When women are financially empowered, studies have shown that their status increases so that they can have greater equality with men and greater bargaining power within their families. Consequently, their self-esteem improves too. As a result of a combination of these factors, studies found that incidences of domestic abuse decreased within these communities. Thus, the far-reaching impact that financial empowerment of women in impoverished communities can potentially have is one of the key reasons we have chosen to focus our attention primarily on women.
While in the programme we focus on women, it by no means excludes other members of the communities in which it operates. Our ultimate aim is the upliftment of entire communities. Therefore, it is an inclusive programme and it creates employment for the marginalised, whether gender-discriminated women, unemployed youth (females) and the disabled. All community members therefore stand a chance to participate, to apply their skills and learn new ones.
Vision: The vision is to expand its influence across South Africa, so that, in time, it may empower with income-generation skills hundreds of thousands of women (and other marginalised individuals) in each and every community in South Africa, regardless of how remote it may be.
Mission: The primary mission is to research thoroughly the needs and skills of communities, on the ground at community level, and to fully utilise existing skills and allow ample opportunity for participants to learn new ones, to create employment and income.
The programme creates a platform for disadvantaged, marginalised women and youth, including the disabled, to come together to share ideas and solutions not just with regard to income generation and related problem-solving, but also to social issues which deeply affect their communities.
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