Women meet to share heartache and trauma

Lorraine Laurence lost her son eight years ago.

Women who have lost loved ones to violence and endured other trauma in their lives came to talk about their experiences at the Steenberg Community Hall on Saturday.

The event, “Seerkry van ’n Moeder” (Heartache of a Mother), was organised by Arise and Shine Community Outreach, a non-profit organisation (“Support event for traumatised women,” Southern Mail, January 18).

The founder of the organisation, Melonie van Nelson, lost two sons, one in 2018 and one in 2022. She said she wanted to grow a support group and she encouraged the mothers of Lavender Hill and surrounds to join.

“Everyone carries the same pain. However, everyone deals with it differently. I deal with my pain by empowering myself and others,” said Ms Van Nelson.

Morieda Dien, a motivational speaker, said all the women at the event had lost a family member to some form of violence.

“It was amazing how they could relate to one another, and the teaching was to take the gangster out of the child and see how lovable he still is, the abuse out of the partner, and restore families, as that is the beginning of the restoration process.”

Lebia Gunn lost her son six years ago.
Natheema Moses-Hopp lost her son 11 years ago.
Linda Barron, lost her twins, a boy and a girl, when she was eight months pregnant in 1991, and another daughter who lived a week in 1993.