Published in Leadership Magazine

By Nicolette Naylor

For too long, inequality and gender-based violence have plagued this country, determined to make an immense difference is Ford Foundation International Program Director, Nicolette Naylor, fighting in the corner of the marginalised.

South Africa has many problems, we cannot get around that fact. South Africa houses one of the most unequal societies in the world, and that leads to its own set of problems — one being the scourge of gender-based violence (GBV).

Annually, in late November and early December, the 16 Days of Activism against gender-based violence is held. While it is a noble cause and one which is necessary to raise awareness, the sad reality is that it can become mere lip service if government leaders, businesses and the public don’t carry on the work. Because once the 16 days have come and gone, we tend to revert to pushing the problem of GBV to one side.

However, there are champions out there fighting this epidemic daily – the kind of champions we need more of if we are ever to eradicate this human rights violation from our society.

Nicolette Naylor, the International Program Director: Gender, Racial and Ethnic Justice at the Ford Foundation, is one such champion. She is passionate about what she does to help the survivors of violence and is determined to root out the issue of inequality. Her lived experiences have taken her in this direction and through the work of the Ford Foundation, she is able to make a difference to the lives of those marginalised after 26 years of democracy.

The Ford Foundation

The Ford Foundation is an independent organization working to address inequality and build a future grounded in justice. For more than 85 years, it has supported visionaries on the frontlines of social change worldwide, guided by its mission to strengthen democratic values, reduce poverty and injustice, promote international cooperation, and advance human achievement. Today, with an endowment of $16 billion, the foundation has headquarters in New York and 10 regional offices across Africa, Asia, Latin America, and the Middle East.

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