Women’s Day 2021 saw the launch of the #Holler project, and for this year’s Women’s Day event Mall of the South expanded on it with the “educate and rescue” theme, as well as supporting EPIC Foundation.

Tandi Potgieter MC’d the event. Various speakers shared their personal experiences with GBV and how they have not just overcome their abuse but have used it to become pillars of strength in our society and “Shouting Out” against GBV.

Alta McMaster, one of the speakers and founder of Epic Foundation, has endured several difficult life events, including being a rape survivor. Through her experience she now has a profound grasp of society’s need to support survivors.

“We live in a society where an increasingly high number of South Africans are exposed to trauma, crime, unemployment, and other socio-economic challenges. Gender-based violence has become a pandemic that seems to be chipping away at the fabric of society.  Our mission is to comfort, support and provide the tools to empower these individuals to move from victims to survivors.

“We can only do this with the support of our community. We thank Mall of the South for their valuable contribution, not just finances and donations, but collaborating with us to produce a tool available for those who need help and support,” said McMaster.

Other speakers included Andile Gaelesiwe, Sarah Wissler, Sharon Gordon, Unaiza Suliman, Romana Adam, Martin Pelders, and Cindy Furman.

Entertainment was provided by “Simply For Entertainment”.

The event also saw the launch of the #HollerSafeSpace platform, which offers a secure portal for getting advice on what to do, where to go, and how to obtain treatment if you’re a victim of abuse.

The platform is a comprehensive online resource that provides valuable information for victims to educate themselves on what to do in their abusive situation, as well as for friends and family of victims to access services that can help them to assist their loved ones leave the abusive environment safely.

The #HollerSafeSpace website can be accessed on: https://hollersafespace.com. Sharing the website on social media platforms and with others in vulnerable circumstances is encouraged. A life may be saved by one share.

Businesses can include a link to the site on their websites by adding the custom code. Mall of the South can be reached at mallofthesouth@redefine.co.za to obtain the code.

Mall Manager, Hester Smith, expressed a heartfelt thank you to each person who bought a ticket to the event.

“This enabled the mall to make the donation of R10 000 to the Epic Foundation. Further donations of approximately R50 000 was made in the form of cleaning material, clothes, toys and other goods. A shout out to all our tenants, contractors, suppliers and community who have graciously assisted with supplies, donations, sponsorships and prizes. Without any of this the event would not have been the success it was. A total of R135 836 was received in sponsorship of the event and the total prize give away was R36 109. Last but not least a huge thank you to each of the speakers who were brave enough to stand up and share the most intimate part of their lives and for taking us through their journey of survival. Without their input this day would not have been possible, I salute you! Keep standing up for what is right and keep inspiring others to do the same.”

The day was a great success, and Mall of the South is grateful for the increased awareness created for GBV.

By educating and rescuing impacted individuals, the Centre aims to improve the plight of GBV victims, by enabling those affected to leave safely, and create long-lasting impact and tangible change.

Submitted by Hustle Media