Khanya College in partnership with the Foundation for Human Rights (FHR) has introduced a new 12-month project to respond to the COVID-19 pandemic called the Community Monitoring Project. The project aims to map out and monitor the socio-economic challenges experienced by different communities.
The pandemic has worsened many social issues in working class communities, and the purpose of the project is to document and create a public debate on these issues, and impact the pandemic has had on the working class communities. This will allow the social justice organisations like Khanya to get a clearer picture of the challenges faced by various working class communities so as to better respond to them.
Currently, platforms like the Covid-19 Working Class Campaign (CWCC) look at how they can intervene and assist the working class to better respond to the detrimental effects of the pandemic. Similarly, Khanya’s Community Monitors will play an active role in raising awareness with community members about COVID-19 and also the struggles taking place through several campaigns. These will include activations such as the distribution of educational pamphlets, and door-to-door petitions.
To date, this project has organised 15 monitors who are from different townships in Gauteng including Soweto, Daveyton and Kwa-Thema, Sharpeville, Wattville in Benoni; Khutsong, and Enkangala (east of Pretoria).
Ahead of the Community Monitors beginning their monitoring work, they are undergoing training at Khanya College which started in February 2021. Part of the training will include but is not limited to; computer skills, political education, reading and writing, presentation, and interviewing skills. The training aims to give the monitors the necessary skills to undertake their monitoring work.
The focus for the Community Monitors will be to monitor and report back on the state of the social conditions in their earmarked communities. This includes looking at matters like access to water, electricity, housing, the public transport system; along with the state of schools and the safety of its learners as they return to schools under COVID-19 conditions. They will also participate in campaigns focussed on bringing awareness to the violence inflicted against women and children, and building literacy skills through reading clubs.
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