Across Africa, you hear about girls on the move. Usually, it is stories of girls being trafficked, fleeing war, escaping child marriage. Girls are rarely the storytellers.
BRAVE is changing that.
We take girls on the road to meet their sisters across South Africa and from around the world. On the first Road Trip in June 2015, girls were trained as youth reporters and photographers by the Children’s Radio Foundation and Iliso Labantu Photography Cooperative, then hit the road to interview their peers along the way, share their stories, and explore their own country.
Want to go on life changing cross-Atlantic Road Trips this year? If you are a girl leader between the ages of 14-18 living in the US or South Africa (or know one!), are passionate about the health, education, safety, and economic empowerment of girls, loves adventure and justice, then you may qualify to be selected for the first-ever BRAVE Road Trip exchange. Go to this link to learn more and apply:
On Road Trips, Rock Girls share their own stories, often stories about abuse, rape and neglect, and the inequality that girls experience in their own communities. They record and bring back stories of girls from across South Africa who are also too afraid to walk to school, girls who were raped on their way to school, and girls who don’t even have a high school in their area, so often drop out after grade seven.
The girls always share ideas on how to overcome these challenges, from taking self defense course to creating girl-led groups to using social media to acting as human rights observers in their own communities.
The girls are also explorers in their own country. They track elephants, overcome fears, sleep under the stars while baboons howl, surf down sand dunes, and swim in the Indian Ocean. But most importantly, they widen the circle of sisterhood, creating opportunities for girls from Cape Town to the Eastern Cape to the Northern Cape and Gauteng and the Northwest border to become girl leaders.
These girls are brave, they are resilient, and they want their voices to be heard. They are the next generation of girl leaders.
The situation for girls and women in South Africa is dire. We are facing an epidemic of violence against girls, women, children. And this epidemic reaches beyond our borders – it is global.
Girls and women are considered the most vulnerable members of society, but they can also be the strongest. BRAVE is creating a network of women leaders who believe in and support girls. Together we share our stories and challenge others to peel back the layers of shame, ignorance, and fear and let our country start to heal.
Since our first Road Trip in June 2015, BRAVE has traveled thousands of kilometres across South Africa. In 2018, with the help of the United States Consulate in Cape Town and the BRAVE annual fundraiser, we are taking girls from South Africa, Tanzania, Kenya, and Rwanda across the Atlantic on a Civil Rights Road Trip to meet girls living in similar communities in the United States, and these same girls will travel to South Africa to learn about the role of women and girl leaders there. The girls will create digital stories, sharing lessons from their own lives and building a virtual database of stories from girls around the world. They want to know what challenges other girls are facing and they want to help them overcome these challenges.