Victim Empowerment Programme (TVEP), a rural domestic violence NPO evicted from
their offices in December, has been given renewed hope thanks to a generous
The TVEP is now able to
operate once again after finding temporary office space thanks to a benefactor.
'We are kind of relieved'
The TVEP was evicted last year from the Old Embassy building in Sibasa which is owned by Public Works after
they failed to keep up with their rent payments.
Health-e News published news
of their plight, and soon after TVEP received a donation of R150 000 from the Open
Society Foundation(OSF). This gift will enable them to pay their rent in the
new building for 12 months, with their new office not being far from the Old
Embassy building where they had operated from for almost 20 years.
“We are kind of relieved
knowing that for 2019 we will still be able to continue to operate, though it
does not offer us a permanent solution,” said TVEP spokesperson, Tshilidzi
He said that they were still
worried about all the furniture that was lost when they were thrown out of
their offices last year.
“The day we were evicted, it
was raining. Due to that most of our furniture was damaged, and the worst part
is that it took us over 18 years to collect those desks,” he said.
TVEP provides counselling,
advocacy, support, access to physical examinations, and anti-retroviral
treatment to hundreds of people in the Vhembe district. Over the years the NPO
has been reliant on foreign aid donations, which mostly covered their
“We still have hope that the
government will step in and help us find a permanent solution, as we cannot
afford to shut down the NPO because thousands of victims have learned to rely
on us. If we close we will be disappointing many people,” said Masikhwa. TVEP
have been offered the chance to buy the new building they are renting, but
would need to find R1,6-million to do so.
“If we get help and enough
donations, the owner of the building is offering to sell the building to us so
that we can have our permanent offices and no longer have to worry about rent
issues,” he said.
In recent months TVEP has
written letters to various government departments pleading for help, including
to the office of the president. They have planned a protest march over the
weekend, which will be aimed at drawing the attention of President Cyril Ramaphosa
who will be at Thohoyandou Stadium on Saturday. - Health-e News.
Image credit: iStock