Soweto String Quartet at gender violence dinner


November 4, 2010 – After a dazzling performance at this year’s Safaricom Kenyan Classical Fusion, the award winning South Africa-based Soweto String Quartet (SSQ) will be making a return to Nairobi this week.

The award winning group consisting of Reuben Khemese, Makhosini Mnguni, Sandile Khemese and Thami Khemese will be performing at the annual Safaricom Foundation/Gender Violence Recovery Centre (GVRC) fundraising dinner slated for the Carnivore Grounds on Friday evening.

The dinner whose proceeds go towards supporting the treatment and care of survivors of gender based violence in the country is targeting to raise Kshs. 8.5 million which Safaricom Foundation will match a shilling for a shilling towards the cause.  Various corporate organizations have sponsored the dinner among them Safaricom Limited which has already donated Kshs 1 million.

Themed ‘A million fathers and daughters – loving, caring and protecting women and girls against violence’ the evening will also feature performances from local Afro-fusion sensation, Sauti Sol.

Individual tickets for the dinner and concert are going for Kshs 5, 000 and are available at Safaricom retail shops at Sarit Centre, I&M, Westgate, village market and Buru Buru. Corporate tables can be purchased for Ksh. 100,000. 

Since inception in 2001 as a unit within the Nairobi Women’s Hospital, GVRC has handled over 16, 261 gender violence cases and earned accolades both locally and on the regional platform for its role in assisting communities. It currently receives an average of 10 cases everyday.

Its highlight was during the 2008 post election violence when over 653 survivors were treated at the facility, thanks to support from partners. During the period some 2, 812 cases were handled through medical camps while another 180,000 received psychosocial support.

Over the years, GVRC has partnered with the Safaricom Foundation, and media to educate Kenyans on the negative impact of gender-based violence in communities. The Kenya Rugby Sevens Team are the goodwill ambassadors for GVRC and have championed the cause of positive masculinity and protecting girls and women. 

The facility has also been on the forefront of development of training manuals on rape management, trauma counseling, child counseling and has counselors spread across the country. They have also spearheaded efforts to set up gender violence desks at police stations countrywide.

During this period, GVRC has offered free medical and psychosocial support to women survivors of sexual and domestic violence. These women form 58% of the cases reported to the centre. Psycho-education and medical treatment is also offered to women through medical camps for example in Mt Elgon and also includes reproductive health and economic empowerment.

The medical and psychological services offered at GVRC are voluntary and therefore the need for more corporate organisations and individuals to contributed towards the cause.

The Nairobi Women’s Hospital established the Gender Violence Recovery Centre (GVRC) as a non-profit making, non-partisan, charitable trust of the hospital whose main purpose is to mobilize resources to provide free medical treatment and psychosocial support to survivors of gender based violence.

The treatment includes Post Exposure Prophylaxes (PEP) given within 72 hours of assault to help prevent infection of HIV/AIDS, emergency contraceptives to prevent unwanted pregnancy, Hepatitis B vaccine and treatment of sexually transmitted infections (STI).


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