Increased gender-based violence, poverty and criminal activities among the youth are some of the reasons behind the establishment of the Monica Gender Violence Solution (MGVS) organisation.
The 23-year-old Ipinge Shaanika Nashilongo, the man behind the project, says he started MGVS after losing his mother in 1997 at the hands of his father.
“My mother suffered at the hands of my father who beat her on several occasions,” Nashilongo says, adding that his life was never easy ever since that day he lost his primary carer and he has had to keep himself busy with things, such as car-washing and driving a taxi without a driver’s license, which led to his arrest, as he struggled to cope with his painful experience.
While locked up the idea of opening up an organisation to combat gender-based violence occurred to him. “MGVS is in fight against gender-based violence and related crimes, as well as empowering youths in Namibia.
“Having experienced a lot of suffering in my life, I do not want my fellow youths to go through the same hurtful experiences, or families to continue losing their beloved ones due to this,” he says.
MGVS was officially launched in March and currently operates from his home in the Havana residential area of Katutura. He named it after Namibia’s First Lady due to her major role in the battle against violence.
It has been hosting workshops and seminars for men and women to look into the issue of violence to discover solutions to it. It also offers advice and counseling to people in need of support, following gender-based violence (GBV), as well as helps resolve conflicts within communities.
MGVS also helps with the implementation of projects and activities aimed at educating communities on relevant social issues, such as human rights, as well as teaching them to refrain from criminal and violent activities.
Further it counsels and dissuades, especially young women who fall pregnant, from undergoing abortions.
“The organisation wants to help people discover their full potential and make wise decisions. We have big plans and a lot to be done this year but we lack financial support, except for that we received from the well-known musician and philanthropist David ‘Exit’ Shikalepo,” Nashilongo says.