The partnership between New World Foundation and Lavender in Lavender Hill was started from a point of gender awareness.
Male/female dualisms describe what typically makes up male qualities and female qualities which are complete opposites. These are assertive/submissive, energetic/calm, strong/gentle etc. A balance of these qualities is healthy. However both male and female have taken on the male qualities in our communities like Lavender Hill for many reasons. Thus such communities have become out of balance with having more aggressive, strong and dominant people and energy.
A partnership that we believe helps bring some balance to the very male qualities of our programme participants is the approach of the company Lavender in Lavender Hill. Using the calming, beauty and medicinal (more female) qualities of this plant and its uses help people restore some balance in their lives in Lavender Hill that is ridden with gang violence, drugs and gender based violence.
It is often joked that Lavender Hill has a contradictory name - a place so violent named after such a calming and beautiful plant. Most of NWF beneficiaries have gone through workshops understanding how to use lavender for therapeutic and calming purposes and add to their community’s beauty. Every participant leaves the training proudly carrying their own lavender plant and enriched with knowledge on its uses.
Marcelle’s approach of giving back to the community by doing presentations, handing out Lavender plants together with knowledge and engaging with the residents of Lavender Hill is appreciated by Lavender Hill residents. Besides being products of high quality, it is heart warming to see a company use the name of “Lavender Hill” in a positive light that people of Lavender Hill can be proud of and not only refer to the gang violence, drugs and gender based violence.
Programme Manager, New World Foundation
NWF Website: www.newworldfoundation.org.za
NWF Blogspot: http://hopejusticeandpeace.wordpress.com/about/