Slide background
Slide background

Transforming Society

Securing Rights

Restoring Dignity

The issue of bullying is once again in the spotlight following the recent alleged suicide of a grade 10 Limpopo school girl.

17 April 2021

The horrific incident of bullying at a Limpopo school earlier this week, has spurred the Non-profit organisation, 1000 Women Trust, into embarking on a campaign to provide teachers and parents with the skills to address bullying in South African schools.

Grade 10 Limpopo school girl Lufuno Mavhunga allegedly committed suicide after she was violently beaten by a fellow school pupil.

The incident was captured on video and went viral on social media earlier this week.

Mavhunga's alleged 15 year old attacker was subsequently arrested and charged with assault.

The SA Human Rights Commission has since visited the school, with preliminary findings indicating that the principal of the Limpopo school failed to take appropriate action when her family alerted him to the incident.

This incident has once again brought the issue of bullying into sharp focus.

Founding member 1000 Women Trust, Tina Thiart says they've already been offering training to parents and teachers via the Whatsapp messaging service.

    The parents always react quite violently. They always want to do something. And if all else fails, let's give them a 'klap'. I always say, before you get really excited, speak to the principal. Find out if the school's got a bullying policy, and do they have a way of dealing with the bully.
    Tina Thiart - Founding member of 1000 Women Trust

1000 Women Trust has sent a team to Limpopo to kick off the campaign, which they hope to to take countrywide.

Thairt says they've developed a trauma volunteer training programme, to equip learners, parents and educators with the tools to assist victims and perpetrators of bullying.

The aim of the anti-bullying training is to help children gain confidence if they're being bullied, and to help them deal with the trauma.

    We have talks in classrooms, where we talk to children about their experiences around bullying. You won't believe it, one of the teachers came back and told us she had forty children in her class. She did the exercise. We've got a pledge form that they sign. And twenty-six of those forty children told stories about being bullied. Furthermore, some of those who told stories, were actually bullies...they were telling stories of being bullied at home and in the communities.
    Tina Thiart - Founding member of 1000 Women Trust

    We've prepared a document for the schools to advise them on what kind of issues they have to address, and a bullying policy. What I think is quite important is the role teachers play, in talking to the children about bullying. They learn it at school, what bullying is, but do they really understand what they're learning?
    Tina Thiart - Founding member of 1000 Women Trust

Thiart says it's important not to discard the alleged bully, who also needs support.

    The bully also needs help. We can't just throw them in jail, and we can't also send them out into the world. It's absolutely a fact that 90% of boys who bully become perpetrators of domestic violence when they're grown up.
    Tina Thiart - Founding member of 1000 Women Trust

Source: Cape Talk

The South African Human Rights Commission.

Follow the SAHRC

About us

The Human Rights Commission is the national institution established to support constitutional democracy. It is committed to promote respect for, observance of and protection of human rights for everyone without fear or favour.

Braampark Forum 3, 33 Hoofd Street, Braamfontein

011 877 3600 (Switchboard)

Sign- up for our monthly Pfanelo newsletter