Edmund Rice Development Menu

Committed to impacting positively on the lives of people made poor

A Royal Visit to The Justice Desk, South Africa

Posted on 27 September 2019

On the 23rd of September, The Justice Desk welcomed The Duke and Duchess of Sussex on the first stop of their African tour. The Justice Desk hosted a community event in Nyanga, a township that faces high levels of poverty and violence, especially against women and children. The Justice Desk partnered with members of the Nyanga community many years ago to raise and promote the power of everyday activists. The work of The Justice Desk in this community has been to empower local people to understand and defend their human rights, in order to build safer communities for all! The organisation carries out trainings with community members of all age groups, from young children who are still in pre-school to adult community members. The Justice Desk gave The Duke and Duchess a tour of the Mbokodo Club, a women’s empowerment project set up in partnership with the Justice Desk in communities across Cape Town, which works to reengage women who have experienced trauma.

In 2016, the Justice Desk Founder and CEO Jessica Dewhurst became a Queens Young Leader and has since received supported from the Queens Commonwealth Trust, of which the Duke and Duchess serve as President and Vice President. To thank the Duke and Duchess of Sussex for their support and to commemorate their visit, The Justice Desk chose to present their Royal Highnesses with a gift for baby Archie, which included granting him the traditional Xhosa name, “Ntsika”, meaning "pillar of strength”.

"Since 2016, Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II and Prince Harry have been such incredible supporters of The Justice Desk. They have offered us mentorship and other opportunities to empower and upskill ourselves so that we can better serve our heroes in South Central Africa. When we got the call that The Duke and Duchess of Sussex wanted to come visit us, we were so excited! It was a truly wonderful day, and I cannot thank them enough for all their love and kindness. They really believe in us and our work and are not afraid to stand up and show it. They had a very clear message, which was that Gender Based-Violence is unacceptable, and that it is up to everyone in a country to address it.”- Justice Desk Founder and CEO, Jessica Dewhurst

The Justice Desk is an award-winning human rights organisation which operates in South Africa, Zambia and Zimbabwe working to empower local people to understand and defend their human rights. They educate, train, advocate for and equip youth, vulnerable groups, civil society, and governments in human rights, justice and advocacy. The Justice Desk works primarily in township areas and vulnerable communities, empowering and equipping local people with the necessary skills and platforms to transform society in a sustainable way and create a more just and equal world. We thank Misean Cara for their ongoing support of The Justice Desk.

Learn more about The Justice Desk and see more photos below.