A Brighter Future With TEARS
A Cry for Help
“It is our aim to promote positive change in societal values and attitudes, where the right to say “NO” is upheld as a basic human right; where victims of rape and abuse are treated with empathy and dignity; where access to legal, medical and psychological support is easily available to any member of society, regardless of gender, race or economic status.”
RED Marketing is proud to introduce TEARS Foundation, founded in 2012 by businesswoman Mara Glennie, herself a survivor of abuse, TEARS is a Registered NPO (Non-Profit Organisation) that uses innovative technology in the fight against domestic violence, sexual assault and child abuse. The members of TEARS put together a unique programme to help victims of rape and sexual abuse, providing free national access to crisis intervention, advocacy, counselling and preventative education services.
TEARS provides 24-hour access to information about where to find medical, legal and psychological support for victims of rape and sexual abuse, free of charge. TEARS seeks to create awareness to facilitate the transformation of attitudes and values, so that abuse of any kind becomes unacceptable in our society. With South Africa being dubbed ‘the rape capital of the world’, TEARS’ innovative projects strives to address the scourge of rape and abuse crippling our country with initiatives such as ‘Help At Your Fingertips’ and their ‘The Medi-App’.
Help At Your Fingertips – *134*7355#
A mobile phone portal linked to a database of service providers, ‘Help At Your Fingertips’ dispenses information via any mobile device using simple prompt-based technology. It tracks the location of the caller/victim and “instantly” (in approx. 45 seconds), sends back details of the three nearest care facilities, thus providing immediate support to victims of rape and sexual assault.
The Medical Information Access Project (Medi-App):
Many abusers take their victims to different facilities for medical treatment to avoid raising suspicion by medical staff. The Medical Information Access Project (Medi-App) allows for medical professionals to electronically record and determine whether a patient (trial is for children u/12) has had any suspicious injuries at other institutions using a cloud-based application. This project is focused on helping health care professionals identify and record suspected repeated abuse which will eventually lead to reductions in gender-based violence and child abuse. In the past 12 months, they have assisted 30,800 victims of rape and abuse.
The Stevie Awards
On November 19, 2016, the TEARS Foundation was named the winner of a Gold Stevie® Award for ‘Organization of the Year – Women in Business for Government or Non-Profit Organizations’. The ‘Stevie Awards for Women in Business’ is the world’s top honour for female entrepreneurs, executives, employees and organizations across the globe – a distinction the TEARS team deserves for their tireless efforts towards this noble cause.
TEARS, like many other organisations that help rape and abuse survivors in South Africa, teeters on the brink of closing every month-end. The harsh reality is that the fight against rape and sexual abuse is overwhelmingly underfunded, meaning that many victims cannot get the help that they so desperately need.
TEARS urges companies to fund initiatives to change the situation of women and girls in South Africa. The costs are tax deductible. TEARS is registered as a Public Benefit Organisation (PBO) in terms of the Income Tax Act (Act 58 of 1962). Funding to TEARS is tax deductible in the hands of the donor – individual or Company – up to 5% of taxable income (SARS ref: 18/11/13/379).
BEE points can be claimed as an incentive and the project can form part of the Tsebo Foundation initiative.
“It is my hope,” says Mara Glennie, the founder of TEARS, “that all corporations and companies in South Africa include the fight against Sexual and Domestic Violence in their CSI budgeting and look at how the cost of this scourge directly affects their bottom line.”