2009: Magodonga Mahlangu and Women of Zimbabwe Arise (WOZA), Zimbabwe
Advocating for political and social change in Zimbabwe, empowering women, and striving for universal education.
Magodonga Mahlangu and Women of Zimbabwe Arise (WOZA) are at the forefront of the struggle for peace and human rights in Zimbabwe. Ms. Mahlangu, a tireless and courageous human rights defender striving for democracy and women’s rights, is a leader of WOZA’s community-based advocacy and civic actions. She and WOZA coordinated over 100 non-violent public demonstrations and surveyed nearly 10,000 people on their hopes for a new Zimbabwe. Despite being arrested over 30 times and repeatedly facing police brutality, Ms. Mahlangu remains steadfast in her commitment to a brighter future for Zimbabweans.
WOZA is a grassroots movement of over 70,000 Zimbabweans. WOZA was formed in 2003 as a women’s civic movement to: provide women with a united voice to speak out on issues affecting their lives; empower female community leadership to press for solutions to the current political and economic crisis; encourage women to stand up for their rights and freedoms; advocate for issues affecting women and their families. Over 3,000 WOZA members have spent time in police custody and often suffer brutal beatings for peaceful assembly and for raising their voices in defense of their human rights and fundamental freedoms.
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