The Social Cohesion department works with a set of activities to counter xenophobia and promote tolerance and a peaceful living together between South Africans and foreign nationals.
•Cultural Diversity Festivals: These festivals are held in Cape Town townships where people from different cultural groups are invited to showcase their cultures, cultural attire and cultural symbols and items. During the event, music composed by artists from various countries is played. In this way ARESTA promotes unity in diversity. These festivals are a mechanism of preventing xenophobia because they provide a platform within which South Africans and foreign nationals can come to understand each other from a cultural perspective and therefore minimising chances of future xenophobic attacks against foreign nationals.
•Sport Tournaments: Sport can be used as a mechanism to promote social tolerance and to prevent xenophobia in townships. The Social Cohesion department organises teams of South Africans and foreign nationals to play a soccer tournament against each other. ARESTA believes that people understand each other at a deeper level once one puts them to compete against each other. Moreover, during these tournaments South Africans and foreign nationals get to interact and share their ideas and insights.
•Peaceful Marches: ARESTA arranges and executes peaceful marches in order to spread the message of tolerance, unity and non-violence in the townships. Stakeholders from various sectors get invited to join the march and to represent their organisation. Often uninvited community members who share the same plea for non-violence in their communities join the march.
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