• Soundcloud
  • Vimeo
  • Youtube
  • Twitter
  • Facebook
Our Work

Vision & Mission

Sonke’s vision is a world in which men, women and children can enjoy equitable, healthy and happy relationships that contribute to the development of just and democratic societies.
Sonke Gender Justice works across Africa to strengthen government, civil society and citizen capacity to promote gender equality, prevent domestic and sexual violence, and reduce the spread and impact of HIV and AIDS.

Organisational Philosophy

Founded in 2006, the Sonke Gender Justice is a South African-based NGO that works across Africa to strengthen government, civil society and citizen capacity to support men and boys in taking action to promote gender equality, prevent domestic and sexual violence, and reduce the spread and impact of HIV and AIDS. Sonke has an expanding presence on the African continent and a growing international profile, through its involvement with the United Nations and a range of other international networks and affiliates.
Sonke recognises that effecting sustained change to gender roles and relations requires addressing the forces that shape individual attitudes and community norms and practices – traditions and cultures, government policies, laws and institutions, civil society organisations, the media and the family – as well as underlying economic, political and social pressures.
Effective responses to gender-based violence and HIV and AIDS require organisations to develop multifaceted strategies and build relationships with both traditional and non-traditional partners. Thus Sonke works closely with a range of organisations and individuals including women’s rights organisations, social movements, trade unions, government departments, sports associations, faith-based organisations, media organisations, university research units and human rights advocates. In addition, Sonke is committed to ensuring that programmes are informed by the perspectives and priorities of those working to advance the rights of lesbian, gay, bisexual, transsexual and intersexual communities, people living with HIV and AIDS, and refugees and migrants. Women, sexual minorities, young people, refugees, migrants and other relevant stakeholders are represented in Sonke’s governance structures.
Sonke recognises the importance of engaged and empowered citizen activism that can both support and hold government accountable. Sonke currently co-chairs the MenEngage Alliance, and embraces the principles of the Alliance to guide the positive involvement of men in gender equality work.

Spectrum of Change

Sonke utilises the ‘spectrum of change’ model, drawing on a broad range of social change strategies that include:

  • Partnering with government to promote policy development and effective implementation
  • Advocacy, activism and community mobilisation
  • Networking and coalition work nationally and internationally
  • Capacity building and training with partner organisations
  • Innovative communication strategies for social change
  • Community education
  • Individual skills building
  • Research and monitoring and evaluation.

icon The Spectrum of Change: A Tool for Integrated Public Health Approaches (99.58 kB)

Organisational Values

Sonke believes that our work with men and boys must:

  • Promote the rights of women and girls and link with efforts to empower them
  • Enhance the lives of boys and men and help them to see the benefits of transforming gender norms
  • Include and respond to diversities among men – such as sexual, ethnic and class differences – and address inter alia, the specific needs of male prisoners and migrants and men (and women) affected by conflict
  • Show the effects of gender norms and inequalities on men and women
  • Explore ways to transform gender relations by engaging both women and men
  • Address structural and social determinants of gender inequality, first and foremost income inequality and the unequal division of labour.
News
Related Articles & Opinion

MEDIA STATEMENT – APRIL 24, 2015 – FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

On Freedom Day (April 27th), Sonke calls on South Africans and our government to stand up for equality, freedom and democracy

Sonke Gender Justice (“Sonke”) joins millions of South Africans condemning the xenophobic violence that has taken place regularly in South Africa during the past decade. We call on our government to take decisive action now, and to ensure that all of those perpetrating violent crimes in our country are held accountable for their crimes. We also call on all of those who have made discriminatory or xenophobic comments, especially members of government and the Zulu king, Goodwill Zwelithini, to unreservedly apologise for their incendiary remarks, and to be held accountable for their role in the current violence experienced by foreign nationals in South Africa, including being held accountable by the South African Human Rights Commission (SAHRC).

We call on the South African Presidency, and President Zuma himself, to publicly request that Zwelithini withdraw and apologise for his harmful remarks in which he told foreigners to return to their countries, knowing full well that he made those statements in a country rife with xenophobia and xenophobic violence, and that he desist from blaming the media or "third forces".

Following recent and impressive nationwide protests against xenophobia, including a massive march by civil society in Johannesburg this week, we remind our leaders that our democracy was established upon ideals of equality, non discrimination and freedom, and that South Africans will not sit quietly while some attempt to destroy the foundations of a free and equal South Africa.

We condemn violence, and in particular violent acts flowing from prejudice and hate. We therefore call on the government to develop sustainable structures to protect all who live in South Africa. We call on government and civil society to increase the investment in containing the current violence, and to put long-term measures in place to prevent and address violence and hostility, particularly by addressing the underlying causes of xenophobia such as endemic poverty, inequality, unemployment and pervasive generalised violence by promoting social cohesion and by fostering a culture of respect for human rights and the law. We at Sonke commit ourselves to expanding our work to end discrimination, stigma and violence in the communities in which we work in South Africa.

We also call on President Zuma and government to address violence generally in South Africa, reminding them of the high levels of murder, gender-based violence and violent crime. “South Africa has a deeply violent history and that continues to play out in our society today, at great harm to our people - through crime, gender-based violence and xenophobia,” says Czerina Patel, Sonke’s Communications Manager, “The experience of violence, both historical and current, is eating away at our social fabric, and is literally killing our people. We need to work to reduce violence everywhere, and we are again reiterating our demand to President Zuma and Minister Shabangu to urgently develop a funded national strategic plan to end gender-based violence which must include broad violence prevention strategies in communities throughout South Africa.”

Foreign nationals in South Africa are being used as scapegoats for widespread economic problems in South Africa that are not their fault; and which will continue to exist whether or not foreign nationals reside in South Africa unless the government responds properly and massively improves service delivery.

Government is failing at providing quality education, creating jobs and getting people out of poverty. “The real enemy to South Africa is corruption and nepotism,” says Patel, “If individuals in government spent less effort looking for ways to enrich themselves and to garner power and money for themselves and their families, more resources would be directed towards the improvement of South Africans' lives; If government put South Africans’ best interests ahead of political interests, we’d have a stronger leadership, one which would be better equipped to deal with the huge challenges of building a new democracy and creating economic opportunity for the poor. Right now, the poor are being left out, and South Africa has become the most unequal country in the world. This has little to nothing to do with African migrants in South Africa, and has everything to do with the failures on the part of our government to govern.”

We invite South Africans and anyone who believes in equality to join us in our advocacy to call for long-term measures to build social cohesion, fight xenophobia and violence, and strengthen democracy, and to march with us for social justice, including in a march this Monday: On Freedom Day, April 27, 2015, we will stand up for democracy, human dignity and a violence-free South Africa and march against xenophobia, afrophobia and all discrimination, rejecting the brutal discrimination of the Apartheid government of the past.

###

March details:
When: Monday 27th April, 11h00
Where: Town Two Khayelitsha, corner Spine Rd and Jeff Masemola, marching to Site C
[March organized by Equal Education Treatment Action Campaign Ndifuna Ukwazi Social Justice Coalition and Sonke Gender Justice]

[If you can’t join us in Khayelitsha, there will also be a smaller march against xenophobia in Mfuleni (organised by Sonke’s MenCare team), leaving Mfuleni High School at 10am on Monday, April 27, 2015. Call Thulani Velebayi for more details: 060-492-5739]

Media Contact:
Czerina Patel, Sonke Communications Manager
021-423-7088
czerina@genderjustice.org.za
... See MoreSee Less

View on Facebook

Sonke's prisons work is featured in an article on the violation of health rights in South African prisons in the Mail and Guardian.
http://mg.co.za/article/2015-04-23-prisoners-health-rights-routinely-violated-in-sas-jails
... See MoreSee Less

View on Facebook

MONDAY, APRIL 27 - #FREEDOMDAY - STAND UP AGAINST #XENOPHOBIA and #AFROPHOBIA

MONDAY IS FREEDOM DAY - AND WHAT BETTER A DAY TO STAND UP FOR FREEDOM, EQUALITY, DEMOCRACY, HUMAN DIGNITY, AND A VIOLENT-FREE SOUTH AFRICA, AND AGAINST XENOPHOBIA, AFROPHOBIA AND DISCRIMINATION ?!

LET'S REMEMBER THAT THE OPPRESSIVE APARTHEID REGIME DISCRIMINATED AGAINST AFRICAN PEOPLE, AND THAT THOSE DAYS IN SOUTH AFRICA, WHERE BLACK PEOPLE WERE UNSAFE AND UNDER THREAT, SHOULD HAVE NEVER EXISTED, AND CERTAINLY SHOULD NOT EXIST IN A POST-APARTHEID DEMOCRATIC AND FREE SOUTH AFRICA, BUILT ON THE FOUNDATIONS OF EQUALITY AND NON-DISCRIMINATION!

Stand up against #Xenophobia #Afrophobia and #violence at a march in Khayelitsha organised by Sonke Gender Justice and our partners Equal Education, Ndifuna Ukwazi Treatment Action Campaign and the Social Justice Coalition

Monday 27 April - FREEDOM DAY, 11am
Meeting : Town 2, Corner Spine Road & Jeff Mosemola Road
Khayelitsha - 11am
March goes to Site C in Khayelitsha!

Let's celebrate and stand up for freedom, democracy, unity, ubuntu and equality!

Please spread the word and hope to see you there, standing up for fellow human beings and a South Africa based on equality, respect and humanity, which rejects the barbaric and hateful ways of the old Apartheid regime.

[CP]
... See MoreSee Less

View on Facebook

MONDAY, APRIL 27 - FREEDOM DAY - STAND UP AGAINST #XENOPHOBIA and #AFROPHOBIA

MONDAY IS FREEDOM DAY - AND WHAT BETTER A DAY TO STAND UP FOR FREEDOM, EQUALITY, DEMOCRACY AND HUMAN DIGNITY, AND AGAINST XENOPHOBIA AND AFROPHOBIA, REMEMBERING THAT THE OPPRESSIVE APARTHEID REGIME DISCRIMINATED AGAINST AFRICAN PEOPLE, AND THAT THOSE DAYS IN SOUTH AFRICA, WHERE BLACK PEOPLE WERE UNSAFE AND UNDER THREAT, SHOULD HAVE NEVER EXISTED, AND CERTAINLY SHOULD NOT EXIST IN A POST-APARTHEID DEMOCRATIC SOUTH AFRICA?!

Stand up against #Xenophobia at a march in Khayelitsha organised by Equal Education Treatment Action Campaign Ndifuna Ukwazi, Social Justice Coalition and Sonke Gender Justice :

Monday 27 April - FREEDOM DAY (Let's celebrate and stand for freedom, democracy and equality)
11am
Town 2, Corner Spine Road & Jeff Mosemola Road
Khayelitsha
March goes to Site C in Khayelitsha!

Please spread the word and hope to see you there standing up for fellow human beings and a South Africa based on equality, respect and humanity, rejecting the ways of the old Apartheid regime.

[CP] (2 photos)
... See MoreSee Less

View on Facebook

Sonke Gender Justice updated their cover photo. ... See MoreSee Less

View on Facebook