CHALLENGES FACING GRASSROOTS WOMEN COME UNDER SCRUTINY
Conference seeks to assert women’s position
Women and girls from Reigate district and other areas of Bulawayo metropolitan province are set to converge at Montgomery Hall, in Kingsdale this Saturday for a conference that seeks to promote their sustainable development and improve their quality of life premised on the purposes and principles of the United Nations and respecting fully and upholding the Universal Declaration of Human Rights.
The workshop will run under the theme: Becoming a Woman of Influence and is expected to attract more than 100 women and girls and other developmental organisations in Bulawayo. Participants will scrutinise the underlying root causes fuelling the crises that women and girls are dealing with today such as HIV/AIDS, rape, sexual abuse, and violence.
Recent statistics published in the Quarterly Digest of Statistics produced by the Zimbabwe National Statistics Agency in January 2013 reveals the plethora of challenges facing women and girls. For instance, the third quarter of 2012 recorded 25 808 cases of newly HIV infected men against 42 296 cases for women. The report also reveals that there were 5017 cases of rape reported, including attempts between January 2012 and November 2012.
Gertrude Pswarayi, the Director of the Creative Centre for Communication and Development says the event will expose women and girls to a variety of services and information on challenges they face on a daily basis.
“This workshop will allow us as women to engage in dialogue that will help us to challenge the myths, beliefs and misconceptions that perpetuate inequalities between men and women. We will demystify a woman’s nature, potential, role and unique contribution to the world. Failure to understand this means that women are misunderstood, held back from fulfilling their potential, and abused,” says Ms Pswarayi.
Ms Pswarayi added that the challenges that women face is exacerbated women’s inability to use their Influence Power for self-realisation. She said the workshop is critical for women as they would have an opportunity to get information and services from a wide range of organisations that are taking part in the workshop.