Outreach, community education and mass mobilization.
Through the Outreach desk, ICRC coordinates its engagements with affiliated community organizations. The work of the desk ranges from:organizing regular meetings between ICRC team and ten democratically organised committee members to consult and take collective decisions regarding burning issues facing the communities. Facilitating education programs such as workshops and activist capacity building on key capabilities such as Grassroots democracy building, legal rights and advocacy training as well as topics on local government legislation, policies and processes and their role in improving their living condition through meaningful use of participation spaces. Conduct, in conjunction with buildings’ committees, participatory research with residents living in abandoned buildings to support a better-informed information base regarding poor people in the inner city, and develop more usable knowledge to promote, strengthen advocacy and engagement by communities. ICRC and its partners (SERI, Planact, CALS) with the City. Supporting the organising of Mass meetings involving residents, the ICRC team, as well as democratically organised committee members, to agree on concrete measures to improve living conditions.
1. Organize committees in buildings to run meetings, unite residents to promote their issues and ability to influence decision-making and stimulate timely and effective implementation of developed plans and actions;
2. Coordinate, facilitate and train committee members to be empowered and skilled for participation and representation of their communities with legal/advocacy organizations and in meetings with the city;
3. Empower more women, through focused trainings/meetings to overcome fear, denial and stigma and start fighting against women’s abuse and xenophobia, and to actively participate in actions concerning their own issues and along with their communities
4. Mobilize leaders/communities for united participation in mass marches and meetings to politicize inclusivity in the city as a critical issue;
5. Regular participation in meetings organised by the city of Johannesburg or by councillors;
Women’s Empowerment Desk
One of the core commitments of ICRC is to make interventions that promote the rights of women and supports women’s’ leadership at all levels of society, particularly in community organisations. In pursuit of this objective, during the month of March 2011 the ICRC launched Rivoningo Women’s Forum (“The Light”). Rivoningo symbolizes a platform where women from different countries living in the inner city of Johannesburg get together, share their stories and get assistance for the difficulties they are facing in terms of violation of women’s rights. Since 2013 RWF is conducting a sewing project, the project teaches women how to sew wonder bags and bead work etc. Our ultimate aim is to run a well-resourced centre for women, including migrants and insecure tenants in the inner city of Johannesburg (CBD) as a focal point of activity that mobilises and strengthens women’s initiatives and those of the affected.
Litigation and Legal Advice Desk
The ICRC litigation and legal advice desk which provides paralegal assistance to the inner city communities. It assists in disputes between landlord tenants. The desk’s key function is to use the application of the law as a tool for advocacy and lobbying authorities to provide access to social services, economic opportunities and affordable housing. The desk is the first point of contact between affected communities and based on the merits of the legal matter, refer community members to partner organisations which offer pro bono legal representation for communities who are under threat of evictions.
State of the Buildings Desk
Bad buildings must decrease in number and the problem of overcrowded must find lasting resolution; where most of residents choose accommodation in newly affordable facilities organized by the city.
Data collection and participatory research – The ICRC database of buildings and
communities is updated and analysed and serves as an instrument to strengthen advocacy and engagement with the city.
Identify at least five bad buildings in which a participatory research is conducted about affordability of housing in the inner-city from residents’ perspective. Compile information collected and group it into categories and present it to stakeholders for process. Conduct regular participatory meetings with partners / fixing roles to be played by each and maintaining the inclusive consultation process. Liaise regularly with stakeholders to discuss issues such as control adoption of documents on housing; control of rent.