Henrico Bekker is inspired by the motto that it is always a good time to do the right thing, and the right thing, on the weekend prior to his 38th birthday (on Sunday 3rd October 2021), was to inspire his friends and family to donate R1 per kilometer for the 300 km that he would cycle in order to raise funds for the women-led organization 1000 Women Trust.
So successful was his personal, social media, and Backabuddy-campaign that he has already raised R9250 of his goal of R10 000.00 and his deadline is only end-of-business on Monday 4th October 2021.
“The vision and goals of 1000 Women Trust is something that is close to my heart. In my workplace – Henrico is a Cape Town-based IT specialist – we also run a program to promote women’s empowerment and equal rights.
“At the end of the day, I want to inspire other men through this campaign. We must stand up as men and unite for equal rights. It is not a threat to our manliness (to do the right thing).
“Through this campaign, I have obviously spoken to friends and family members on Instagram (and other social media outlets) and there was an article on our company’s newsletter as well,” Bekker said.
Bekker is an athlete who has run two marathons in his lifetime and also completed two half Iron Man challenges.
For his previous birth, he challenged his friends to donate money for breast cancer, and during the hard lockdown last year, he did a marathon in his own parking lot at Sunset Beach, also for a fundraising campaign.
“I believe it is always a good time to do the right thing. And the right thing is to be selfless and to put other people’s needs before your own,” Bekker says.
Bekker’s fundraiser for 1000 Women Trust is via the Backabuddy-platform and can be accessed on https://www.backabuddy.co.za/champion/project/1000-women for anybody who wants to support it.
1000 Women Trust mobilizes resources to organizations that support, raise awareness and provide opportunities for women and children who have been affected by gender-based violence. The Trust provides solidarity to women, amplify the voices of activists and advocate for change that can end gender-based violence and femicide.
The Trust does this through various projects and fundraising initiatives to ensure that women and girls are empowered, inspired, educated, and equipped for daily life.
1000 Women Trust has joined a network of organizations, led by the Nottingham School of Business who has embarked on a campaign to explore digital technology and the role it might play to combat gender-based violence in South Africa.
The campaign or project is called WE DARE, an acronym for Women’s Equality: Digital Access and the Right to Expression.
1000 Women Trust is a network partner and ran community focus groups with women during the important first phase characterized by network building, in which it was established what the barriers are for women to use existing technology, and how it could be used effectively to address gender-based violence in the communities.
The Trust facilitated twenty focus groups, which were held in conjunction with a series of HearMeToo-sessions, which are support groups for gender-based violence survivors to share their stories and experiences of gender-based violence.
1000 Women Trust, in association with the Ruben Richards Foundation and the department of social development, is also actively engaged in a “men championing change” program, through which the Trust uses an anti-bullying campaign and the #MakeTime-campaign to teach boys and men the importance of non-violence and respect for women and girls.
The goal of the #MakeTime-campaign is to inspire men and women to invest at least 30 minutes per month to share the values of respect, gender equality, and non-violence with their boys when they socialize with girls. You can join #MakeTime by visiting www.maketime.org.za.