Cape Town - "I think God gave me a second chance so I could rescue other women like me," says Mandisa Monakali, the woman behind Ilitha Labantu in Gugulethu.
The organisation, which celebrates its 30th anniversary this year, provides face-to-face counselling for women and children and raises awareness and community mobilisation around violence against women and children.
Sis Mandisa, who grew up in Gugulethu, says she is herself a survivor of abuse.
"In those days talking about violence against women was taboo, inside and outside our homes, nobody used to talk about it. It was a secret issue. And the woman who was kicked carrying a baby on her back and twins in her stomach, running from her house, knocking on neighbours' doors for shelter, lying in the street and people thought by the way the man kicked her, she may be dead, that was me 30 years ago.
"That's how I decided that if I could find myself in that situation what about an ordinary South African woman... because during that time I was an activist fighting for liberation, fighting to be free but not free at home."