Daphne Jansen – South Africa

She is one of the 1000 women proposed for the Nobel Peace Price 2005.

Daphne Jansen is a project coordinator for the Network on Violence Against Women in Mitchell’s Plain, Cape Town. Born in 1956, Daphne has been involved in bringing change for women in her community, focusing on eradicating violence against women. She is also a motivational speaker. Daphne is a graduate of Development Education Leadership Teams in Action (Delta). She obtained a certificate in adult education and a higher diploma in adult education training and development from the University of the Western Cape, South Africa, where she worked as a part-time tutor.

She says: “Domestic violence happens all the time. It is not predictable when it is going to take place. Peaceful homes and peaceful communities is what we wish for, and for it to happen we must work hard”.


Daphne Jansen – South Africa

She works for Network on Violence Against Women (described on Rape Crisis, Cape Town),
and for Development Education Leadership Teams in Action DELTA (described on W.K.Kellogg Foundation – and see also the scholar texts about this item).

Daphne works for the Network on Violence Against Women in Mitchell’s Plain, Cape Town. The Network as it is known started in 1996 and since its inception Daphne has been instrumental in its sustenance. Before joining the Network, Daphne worked all her life as a volunteer in the community, but now she is the Network’s Co-ordinator of the Mitchell’s Plain branch.

The work that she does is difficult. It is not only about awareness raising and training for women but also involves the courts of law. Legal systems in South Africa have never been fair to women and children and to change these systems is a challenge. Trainers like Daphne need to know how these systems work yet they have not studied law. Because of such processes and procedures Daphne spends a lot of time working and negotiating referrals for women.

The work of the Network has benefited women and the community in general in that it has managed to make society understand what domestic abuse is. It has also helped semiliterate communities to familiarise themselves with new government legislation on human and women’s rights. As part of the Network’s activities a focus group on human rights was established.

Daphne works for long hours and always goes the extra mile. As a result, she spends minimal amount of time with her family. She has influenced other women to take up the fight to eradicate violence against women. Women who have attended her workshops are encouraged to become members of the organisation and to become part of the voluntary focus groups. Daphne is also a motivational speaker.

The Network introduces women to basic life skills, workshops, and rights awareness programmes. There are also forums which serve as platforms that encourage women to ‘come out’ and speak publicly about their experiences in abusive relationships.

This work is not without challenges. Since the inception of the Network, in 1996, there has been little or no funding and Daphne and the members carry all costs. “Because of funding constraints we do not have an office conducive to the organisation”, said Daphne.

Encouraged by the achievements so far where about 200 women are trained and more than 800 attend the Network forums, including young women and school children, she contends: “These forums help woman claim their rightful place in society”. (1000peacewomen).

Sorry, there are too many persons in many countries with the same name, I could not distinguish our peacewomen among them.


The Wallace Foundation, Grants and Programs;

Executive Education on IIM: Executive Courses & Action Learning Workshops;

Leadership Foundation for Higher Education.

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