Victims of sensitive crimes are often left feeling helpless, isolated and vulnerable. In many cases, the process of reporting these crimes to the authorities can exacerbate these feelings, especially in environments that are not conducive to comfort and privacy.
Tackling this challenge in Kayamandi township in Stellenbosch in the Western Cape, local NPO, Ukukhanya Projects, lobbied extensively for the establishment of a Victim Support Room at the Kayamandi police station. In 2022, Ranyaka was invited to assist with the fundraising for, and refurbishment of a disused room at the police station with the purpose of creating a safe and welcoming space where victims can share their stories with trained professionals and receive the support they need. Volunteers mobilized by Ukukhanya Projects joined forces with the Ranyaka Fix Your Space team to tackle the clean-up and make-over process.
Above: Work kicks off at the Kayamandi Police Station where volunteers gathered to clean up the area outside the future Victim Support Room.
Nedbank Stellenbosch on board
The Nedbank branch in Stellenbosch came on board as the primary funder for the make-over. Their involvement was, however, not limited to financial support. As the implementation agent for the national Nedbank Proud of my Town programme, Ranyaka works in close partnership with local Nedbank branch staff in the various towns across South Africa where the PoMT initiative is being rolled out.
To date, the Nedbank Stellenbosch branch has been involved hands-on in a number of community development projects. Once again, under the guidance of branch manager, Adél Burger, the local Nedbank team demonstrated its sincere commitment to making a tangible difference in the town. Nedbank team members joined in the transformation as volunteers – tackling the painting of the interior of the room, as well as the exterior entrance area. The branch also donated furniture for the room.
Above: Team members from the Nedbank Stellenbosch branch were involved hands-on in the transformation of the room. Here they are, painting the interior.
Above: Thank you to all the volunteers and interns who helped make this transformation possible!
A safe haven opens its doors
On 26 April 2023, the newly refurbished Kayamandi SAPS Victim Support Room opened its doors with senior SAPS members, representatives from the Stellenbosch Municipality, the Community Policing Forum, Nedbank, participating NPOs, local churches and local employers in attendance.
The transformation of the room was the first step in a brand-new journey that will now continue under the compassionate care of the trained professionals to whom it has been entrusted. The room will be run by the police Victim Empowerment Coordinator, who is a member of the Stellenbosch Police Station and who will be supported by screened and trained volunteers from the local community.
“The police Family Violence Child Protection and Sexual Offences (FCS) Unit will also assist victims in the room with interviews and investigations. Victims will also be referred to medical evidence and counselling, among others. The Victim Support Room will operate 24/7,” explains Nathalie Martin, spokesperson for the Stellenbosch Police.
Above – left to right: Purdey September (Ranyaka Community Transformation), Adél Burger (Nedbank Stellenbosch branch manager), General M Groenewald (Cape Winelands District Commander, SAPS), Brigadier S Sonjani (Station Commander, SAPS) and Zenani Mithi (Ukukhanya Project)
Above: Representatives from Nedbank, Ukukhanya Project and Ranyaka Community Transformation at the official launch of the SAPS Victim Support Room.
Above – left: Spoken poet, Genevieve Zongolo, shared a moving poem with attendees at the launch event. Right: Karen Seboa (Nedbank Regional Manager) spoke on behalf of Nedbank.
Above: Adél Burger (Nedbank Stellenbosch Branch Manager) with Kayamandi resident and Nedbank team member, Mfundo Nzimande. Adél met Mfundo whilst he was volunteering at the make-over of the Victim Support Room. Mfundo was unemployed at the time, but had the qualifications he needed to join the Nedbank team. Mfundo now holds the position of Client Advisor at Nedbank Stellenbosch!
“Our hope is that this will be a place of justice, healing and restoration for the brave survivors of sensitive crimes who walk through that door to make their voices heard.” – Ranyaka CEO, Johan Olivier.
Above: Purdey September (Ranyaka – Fix Your Space Project Manager) and Onke Mbelwa (CoCreate Hub Maintenance Manager) were instrumental in the transformation of the room. Thank you!
It takes a team
Thank you to all the roleplayers who helped make this project possible!
- To SAPS Kayamandi, SAPS Stellenbosch, SAPS Cape Winelands District and the Stellenbosch Municipality and local councillor for their tremendous support.
- To the Ukukhanya Project for initiating this worthy project and for the opportunity for Ranyaka to partner with the NPO in translating the vision into a reality
- To Nedbank Stellenbosch and the Nedbank Proud of my Town programme for their financial, volunteering and moral support, and the donation of furniture
- To BUCO for the donation of building supplies
- To Ivan Tauriji from Taulin Blinds and Awnings for the donation of a new blind for the window and assistance with the flooring
- To Rene van Rooyen from Jamestown for the donation of soft toys
- To the CoCreate Hub Stellenbosch for the donation of furniture
- To Onke Mbelwe, Maintenance Manager at the CoCreate Hub, for his hands-on support and many hours of hard work
- To Ranyaka’s very own Fix Your Space Champion, Purdey September, for truly going the extra mile and pouring heart and soul into a project that, we trust, will have a profound impact on the lives of many.
- To Ranyaka’s interns from both Stellenbosch and Norway!