Every Wednesday we celebrate a constellation of phenomenal women leaders and activists who continue to demonstrate courage, resourcefulness, vision and most of all strength to rise above social, political and economic obstacles in order to stand up and for what they believe in. Since time immemorial women have been at the forefront of various revolutions playing essential roles in their communities, but not much is mentioned about the active roles they play in development issues. Every #WomenWednesday we dedicate the day to making sure that when women’s (Her_Story) stories are recorded, and in so doing celebrating their role.
This week we celebrate Josie Adler, a courageous women, friend of DAG and a resilient Ekhaya Neighbourhood Organiser Josie Adler, who is recognised leader in neighbourhood transformation and has played a major role in putting Hillbrow on the map by working with the community to spearhead the EKhaya Neighbourhood Improvement Programme in 2004 - the first of its kind in a low-income, high-density, inner-city residential neighbourhood in South Africa. Josie’s determination and broad-based organising was instrumental in synchronising the relationship between property owners from the profit and social housing sector and the building managers in the area to unite and work together in the creation of a safe and habitable Hillbrow community.
In 2009, Josie, with the support of EKhaya team led a massive clean-up campaign to transform dysfunctional buildings, improve failing services, and neglected community riddled with crime and fragmented by fear and distrust. To everyone’s amazement, Josie had broken new ground as had managed to influence most the “notorious” Hillbrow community and regenerated the “scary” inner-city decay and made it a sustainable and "free" neighbourhood where individuals can walk, play and conduct their business without fear.
This #WomensMonth we applaud Josie for her passion and dedication to neighbourhood and community transformation. Today we salute her for breaking a new ground for women and communities around South Africa. Her diligent efforts in engaging communities, cities and organisations to work toward sustainable neighbourhood regeneration serves as a model for DAG and others