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Women’s centre hosts community open day

The Saartjie Baartman Centre for Women and Children marked the commencement of Women’s Month with a community open day. On 1 August, the centre for abused women and children opened its doors to the public to showcase the services it offers to victims of violence, including safe accommodation, counselling, substance abuse treatment, job skills training and childcare.

“While we celebrate the achievements of women in this country, Women’s Month should also serve to highlight gender based violence; the impact it is having on individuals and the broader community,” says the Centre’s Director, Shaheema McLeod.

On an average day in South Africa, three women will die at the hands of her intimate partner – a rate five times higher than the global average. It is estimated that every 17 seconds a woman is raped, with 40% of South African men admit to hitting their partner.

“We are fighting a war against women; there are daily casualties and long-lasting trauma,” says McLeod. “Women need to know where to seek help when they are being threatened and victimised.”

Situated on the Cape Flats, the Saartjie Baartman Centre has been an integral part of its community for 17 years. Over that period, its capacity has increased to house on average 100 women and their children. It has also adapted to the changing profile of women seeking help, launching a substance abuse unit in 2016 that allows women to seek shelter and withdrawal support with their children.

In remembrance of women who have lost their lives at the hands of their intimate partners, those who attended the open day lit candles. Women who require assistance can contact the centre on 021 633 5287 or visit the Centre’s website at



Distributed by Be-cause Integrated Communications:

Emma Proctor

021 447 1082 / 072 930 4412

On behalf of the Saartjie Baartman Centre for Women and Children:

Director: Shaheema McLeod

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