“Faith gives South Africa a foundation to build a violence-free country,” says South Africa’s Anglican archbishop, Thabo Makgoba.(Image: Anglican Church of Southern Africa)Veena O’Sullivan of global Christian relief and development agency Tearfund says faith-based organisations have an obligation to work to end sexual violence against women and children.(Image: Sulaiman Philip)MEDIA CONTACT• Veena O’Sullivan Team LeaderTearfund+27 31 266 8469Sulaiman PhilipThe rape and murder of cousins Yonelisa (2) and Zandile (3) Mali in the poor settlement of Diepsloot north of Johannesburg in October enflamed the crime-ridden community, and led to violent reprisals. The community burnt the suspects’ homes to the ground.Every day, South Africans face reports of dreadful violence against women and children: the rape of a 90-year-old grandmother, or of a three-week-old child. Each new horror rouses people’s anger. But, until now, that anger has had no outlet. The rape and murder of the Mali toddlers was just one of 64 000 reported cases of sexual violence that take place in South Africa in a single year. It’s a shockingly high number. And according to to Breaking The Silence, a report released by global Christian relief and development agency Tearfund, those reported cases make up a mere 5% of all sexual assaults committed in a year.Tearfund’s report spurred the agency to set up We Will Speak Out, with the support of Archbishop Thabo Makgoba, the Anglican archbishop of Cape Town. Launched at St Albans the Martyr Church in Pretoria on Monday 25 November, the intention of the campaign is to help combat sexual violence through the more active involvement of the church.Some 35-million South Africans identify themselves as Christian, out of a population of 51-million. Christian South Africans, Makgoba said, have a history of fighting injustice. Desmond Tutu, South Africa’s only archbishop emeritus, won the Nobel Peace Prize for his campaign to end apartheid using economic sanctions.“We have done mighty things before, and we can do it again,” Makgoba said. “Together, we can draw a line and move forward towards a different future.”Veena O’Sullivan, Tearfund team leader, said the involvement of the worldwide Anglican Communion would help stop the stigma against rape survivors, and break the silence that allows sexual violence to continue. “We needed a champion, a strong voice that will be heard and listened to,” she said. “Reverend Makgoba is that man who can bring together leaders of all religions.”Multi-denominationalFor now, the campaign involves only the Christian community. But Tearfund hopes that within a year all faiths will be join it. The NGO’s research found that survivors believed it was time people of faith proved themselves. A common assertion among survivors interviewed for the study was the belief that the church was far too concerned with theology and did not see tackling sexual violence as part of its biblical mandate.Tearfund’s research involved interviews with survivors of sexual assault, many of whom were clear in their feeling that the church had failed them as women and then again as victims. Researchers in Bredasdorp, where teenager Anene Booysen was brutally raped and murdered, found a negative perception regarding the role of the church when it came to victims of sexual assault.“The church is the anchor of the community but they run from victims. They sweep it under the rug. Or they stigmatise victims, isolating them,” an anonymous survivor told the researchers.O’Sullivan has worked with survivors in Democratic Republic of Congo, where rape is used as a weapon of war, but is shocked by the cyclical nature of sexual violence in South Africa. “The culture of rape is so cyclical in this country. We found families where the grandmother and mother had been raped; now the child as well.”Sexual violence has become normalised in some communities, the report suggests, and O’Sullivan argues that there is a real danger that these perceptions will become ingrained and intractable. “There is a culture of silence that comes from that; an acceptance that it is inevitable. That is what we must bring an end to.”Four-point planWith this as a guiding principle, Tearfund and the Anglican Church formulated a four-point plan that forms the basis of We Will Speak Out:● Faith communities will speak out and act: despite the negative perception that some survivors have of the church, they still feel that religious communities are a refuge. The church has a unique role to offer lifelong support to survivors. A church in Bredasdorp is showing the way by setting up a neighbourhood watch scheme. It spreads safety messages and offers counselling and home visits to survivors.● Churches will become safe spaces for survivors: beyond praying for an end to sexual violence and offering a safe space for healing, congregations are encouraged to become non-judgemental sanctuaries for survivors. Male church leaders need to highlight and spread the message that women in their congregation share the same rights as men and that the blame for sexual violence cannot be laid at the door of the victim.● Survivors’ movement will influence policy and practice: the church’s response to the epidemic of sexual violence will be shaped by survivors. The church has undertaken to work with the authorities to understand the procedures involved in reporting rape and to offer assistance to any victim who asks for it.● Men will be involved in preventing sexual violence: the faith community has access to a pool of dedicated volunteers who can mentor men and boys about their role in relationships and society. They are often also the only source of positive role models in a community and these should be tapped to spread the message that sexual violence must end.O’Sullivan admits that the findings did not come as a surprise, but she says that it is a reflection of the inherent good of South Africans that they are embracing a programme hoping to make a change. “South Africa is an amazing country but on the ground there is so much pain and suffering. Communities are willing to join hands, to collaborate. There is hope.”
Rosemarie Allen (Used with permission)by Rosemarie Allen, PhDTen Facts About Racial Disparities in Preschool Discipline:Studies spanning more than four decades reveal that African American children are nearly four times more likely to be suspended than White students (Bradshaw et al., 2010; Children’s Defense Fund, 1975; Milner, 2013; Skiba et al., 2011).A study conducted in 2005 by Yale University showed preschoolers were expelled at three times the rate of children expelled from Kindergarten through twelfth grades combined. A Colorado discipline study conducted in 2006, found that 10 children per 1,000 were expelled from early childhood programs, which was nearly four times the rate of K-12 grades combined (Hoover, et al., 2006).A 2009 survey of Boulder County Colorado early care and education providers showed children of color comprised the largest group of expelled children, at 13 per 1,000 (Greenberg & Ash, 2011).The United States Department of Education’s, 2016 Civil Rights Data Report, showed that approximately 7,500 preschoolers were suspended. The data also revealed that Black children comprise only 19 % of the preschool population, but nearly half of all suspensions. African American girls are 54 percent of preschool girls suspended and are only 20 percent of the preschool female population (United States Department of Education, 2016).Research shows students who are suspended are more likely to perform poorly in school, drop out of high school, and engage in delinquent behavior (Losen & Skiba, 2010).It has also been shown suspended children have lower academic success than those who were not suspended (Rausch & Skiba, 2004).Students who are suspended also spend less time in classroom instruction, resulting in lower reading scores and they ultimately disengage from school (Arcia, 2006; Gregory et al., 2010).When children are subjected to exclusionary discipline practices such as suspension and expulsion, they are 10 times more likely to enter the juvenile justice system (American Psychological Association Zero Tolerance Task Force, 2008).The disproportionate number of children of color suspended from school and subsequently involved in the juvenile justice system contributes to the preschool to prison pipeline (Advancement Project, 2010).What can professionals do to CHANGE this?Address Implicit BiasIssues of bias and deficit thinking must be addressed to balance the inequities in disciplinary practices. Implicit bias is defined as unconscious beliefs and stereotypes (Banks, Eberhardt & Ross, 2006). There is evidence that disproportionality in disciplinary practices is impacted by teachers’ responses to perceived behaviors that are based on racial stereotypes and implicit bias (McIntosh, et al., 2015). Teachers who view African Americans as dangerous and difficult to control are more likely to use punitive disciplinary measures such as suspensions and expulsions (Monroe, 2005).Use the Pyramid ModelThis model provides early childhood personnel with the tools to promote and enhance social emotional development in young children. The Center on the Social Emotional Foundations for Early Learning (CSEFEL) defines social-emotional development as the ability of children age birth to five to identify, experience and respond appropriately to a variety of emotions. Early childhood professionals use the Pyramid Model to promote social-emotional competence by intentionally teaching skills for expressing emotions, making friends, developing relationships with adults and other children, in the context of the child’s family and community (Center on the Social Emotional Foundations for Early Learning, 2008).To learn more about implicit bias and its impacts in your professional environment, join us for the MFLN Virtual Conference Sept. 26-29. Rosemarie will have a session on Sept. 29 at 11 a.m. EST entitled “Implicit Bias: From Awareness to Positive Change.” To learn more about the full conference, click here.
PBA IMAGESCharles Rhodes took charge in the fourth period and helped San Miguel clinch the top two seed in the 2017 PBA Commissioner’s Cup with a 112-101 victory over GlobalPort Friday at Smart Araneta Coliseum.The enigmatic reinforcement unloaded 19 of his 34 points in the payoff period, wile also hauling down five rebounds and two assists to quash the Batang Pier’s belated rally.ADVERTISEMENT MOST READ LATEST STORIES BREAKING: Cop killed, 11 hurt in Misamis Oriental grenade blast Filloil: Arellano slips past St. Benilde Cayetano dares Lacson, Drilon to take lie-detector test: Wala akong kinita sa SEA Games Don’t miss out on the latest news and information. Lacson: SEA Games fund put in foundation like ‘Napoles case’ Palace: Duterte to hear out security execs on alleged China control of NGCP “I told the boys that this is the start of our best-of-three series. I’m glad that they responded and we now have one going to the quarterfinals,” said Austria, as San Miguel braces for a date against either Alaska or Phoenix.GlobalPort dropped to 4-7 and reeled to the eighth-seed playoff, either again the Aces or the Fuel Master, depending on the result of the second game. The knockout game is slated on Sunday at Mall of Asia Arena.Justin Harper topped the Batang Pier with 25 points and 12 rebounds, while Stanley Pringle chipped in 21 markers, nine boards, and five assists.Terrence Romeo had 21 points, seven assists, and six boards, and Bradwyn Guinto had 11.Aside from those four, coach Franz Pumaren had little to no support from the rest of GlobalPort in its last elimination game.ADVERTISEMENT Every 18 seconds someone is diagnosed with HIV “I’m happy to see for the first time that our import didn’t get to early foul trouble,” said coach Leo Austria of Rhodes.Chris Ross added 17 markers, seven assists, six boards, and two steals, while June Mar Fajardo came off the bench and registered 15 points, eight rebounds, and three dimes despite playing through his stiff neck.FEATURED STORIESSPORTSSEA Games: Biñan football stadium stands out in preparedness, completionSPORTSPrivate companies step in to help SEA Games hostingSPORTSMalditas save PH from shutoutAlex Cabagnot nabbed a double-double of 13 markers and 10 boards, while Marcio Lassiter and Arwind Santos both wound up with 13 points each.Finishing the eliminations with a 9-2 card, the Beermen have secured a twice-to-beat edge in the quarterfinals but they still await their playoff seeding depending on the Ginebra-Mahindra duel. BREAKING: Cop killed, 11 hurt in Misamis Oriental grenade blast Robredo: True leaders perform well despite having ‘uninspiring’ boss PLAY LIST 02:49Robredo: True leaders perform well despite having ‘uninspiring’ boss02:42PH underwater hockey team aims to make waves in SEA Games01:44Philippines marks anniversary of massacre with calls for justice01:19Fire erupts in Barangay Tatalon in Quezon City01:07Trump talks impeachment while meeting NCAA athletes02:49World-class track facilities installed at NCC for SEA Games The Scores:SAN MIGUEL 112 – Rhodes 34, Ross 17, Fajardo 15, Cabagnot 13, Lassiter 13, Santos 13, Reyes 4, Tubid 3, Heruela 0, Espinas 0.GLOBALPORT 101 – Harper 25, Pringle 21, Romeo 21, Guinto 11, Anthony 9, Pessumal 5, Cortez 4, Ababou 3, Grey 2, Forrester 0, Pennisi 0, Maierhofer 0, Mamaril 0, Paredes 0.Quarters: 32-21, 51-46, 77-72, 112-101.Sports Related Videospowered by AdSparcRead Next Pagasa: Storm intensifies as it nears PAR BSP survey: PH banks see bright horizon amid dark global recession clouds View comments