"LANGUAGE MATTERS"​ The Justice Desk's '16 Voices in 16 Day Campaign'​



We are proud to introduce our seventh voice in our “16 Voices in 16 Days” Campaign against gender-based violence!


Mahlatse Mashua is the founding CEO of the Kolisi Foundation, founded by Siya & Rachel Kolisi in 2019 to support people living in under-resourced communities in South Africa.

Mahlatse is passionate about casting compelling visions, mobilizing people to think deeply and to act compassionately. Having worked in various contexts, including corporate, schools, sports teams and the non-profit sector, he draws from his experience of engaging people from across divides to see each other, know each other, and work alongside each other. Mahlatse is dedicated to embedding the values of relationship, integrity, discourse and continuous learning into his life and making a meaningful contribution to the communities that he works with.


The Justice Desk believes in the power of the everyday person, especially in their ability to create lasting, impactful and effective change in their communities! Through this campaign, we hope to both raise awareness to #GBV, but also to unite and inspire others in order to take action within their own spaces. Ending GBV is not the fight of some, but of us all!


Let us never forget to recognise the incredible power that we as South Africans have, when we come together, to make a change.


By amplifying these 16 remarkable changemakers, we hope to inspire YOU in contributing YOUR own thoughts and voice, as we unite in solidarity in the important fight against gender-based violence.


"Language matters. The way we speak about GBV can both reflect and shape our understanding and approach. For example, Gender-Based Violence is often spoken of as a problem of ‘other men’ – violent men, sexual deviants, or ‘broken men’. Often many interventions aim to identify and target “problem men” who are at higher risk of perpetrating violence against women. Or even focus on harsher prison sentences and punitive measures to punish men once they have already committed acts of violence against women.


But we don’t problematize all instances where we men, undermine women’s worth, dignity and humanity, then we are only cutting off the branches of the tree, and neglecting to pull out the roots.


We need to shut down sexist jokes and call out other men when they harass women. We need to speak up in our families, our sports clubs, with our friends and colleagues. Gender-Based Violence is a problem of men. The responsibility for ending violence against women lies with us as men."


Mahlatse Mashua

CEO Kolisi Foundation


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