The annual Silent Protest – which is believed to be the largest anti-rape and sexual violence protest held in South Africa – takes place this Friday. During its eight year history, it has focused predominantly on students but, organisers say, Rhodes does not exist in a vacuum, it is part of a larger community and this year they are actively encouraging people from all over Grahamstown to take part. If this is something you'd like to be involved with, then here is exactly what to do an when. FRIDAY 7 AUGUST 06h00 – GATHERING at Alec Mullins Hall on RU campus.
06h00 – 06h50 T-SHIRT DISTRIBUTION, BRIEFING AND ADDRESS BY ORGANISERS.
06h50 – 07h00 SILENCING of silent protestors by rape survivors and survivors of sexual violence.
07h00 – 07h30 MARCH to Rhodes Main Admin building via African, South, Prince Alfred and Somerset Streets.
07h30 – 07h45 PHOTOS AND PRESS in front of Main Admin on RU campus.
07h45 – 12h30 Protesters go about their days as usual attending lectures, tutorials and work. (Debrief Cafe available in the RA Room, Steve Biko Building from 08h00 – 17h00).
12h30 – 14h00 DIE-IN Cathedral Square. All protesters gather.
14h00 – 17h00 Protesters go about their days as usual attending lectures, tutorials and work.
17h00 – 17h30 GATHER outside Main Admin on RU campus and MARCH via Drostdy Arch down High Street to the Cathedral. 17h30 – 20h00 BREAKING THE SILENCE, supper, debriefing, discussion and reflection in the Cathedral.
20h00 – 'TAKE BACK THE NIGHT’ MARCH to campus via Hill, New and Somerset Streets, through Drostdy Arch.
You can participate as any one of the following:
1.Silent Protestor: Anyone can choose to participate in this category. Silent protesters have their mouths taped shut from 7am to 5:30pm, offering a visual image of, and challenging the silence surrounding, rape and sexual violence.
2.Solidarity Protester: These protestors are not taped on the day. They stand in solidarity with women and men who are silenced by rape and sexual violence. They choose to speak out and engage others on the stigma, victimization and silencing of survivors of rape and sexual violence. We encourage solidarity protestors to talk about and challenge the ideas and practices which support rape culture and to support their friends and colleagues who are wearing the silent or survivor shirts.
3.Rape Survivor: Any survivor of rape, incest or child sexual abuse can wear the shirt, if they want to self-identify as a rape survivor.
4.Survivor: Any person who has experienced sexual violation of any form but would not call it rape and would not feel comfortable wearing a rape survivor t-shirt can choose to participate as a survivor. If you would like to sign up to participate in the Silent Protest you can sign up online at: http://goo.gl/forms/1UE3AABu2Y or you can visit the Raphael Centre, St Mary’s DCC, or FAMSA to sign up in person.
(Your shirt will cost you R60, which you can either pay in cash when you sign up at the community partners mentioned above or at Alec Mullins Hall on the morning of the protest when all protesters gather.
For more information please visit our website https://www.ru.ac.za/silentprotest/ or contact Lindsay Kelland at firstname.lastname@example.org