Happy International Women’s Day!

Happy International Women’s Day! This global day celebrating the social, economic, cultural and political achievements of women is a great opportunity to recognise the women who make a difference in your life.

International Women’s Day is also a call to action and this year the question is “what bold actions are you taking to help drive gender parity?”.

Global Development Group projects aim to promote activities that foster gender equality for women, we want to see all women and girls in our communities free and empowered to lead healthy and productive lives.

Strategies towards promoting women’s empowerment must recognise that cultural norms and expectations on women may deny or restrict women the opportunity to achieve their full potential. As such special consideration must be given to the specific needs of women and girls. Here are some examples of gender-specific activities in our projects that promote equal access for women and girls:

  • Women’s Self Help Groups and Co-operatives provide a supportive network where women join to learn together, save and lend money, and encourage each woman towards achieving her goals. In Rwanda we partner with African Evangelical Enterprise for J507, in Tanzania with the Tanzanian Milk Board for J239, and in India with Maranatha Community Welfare Development Services for J544N.
  • Girls are rescued from violent and traumatic situations and/or drug and alcohol addictions and welcomed into the care of our specialist centres where they can receive medical attention, counselling, rehabilitation, education and training. Their children can join them in that process. In Kenya we partner with Mully Children’s Family for J833; in Cambodia with SHE Rescue Home for J828, Teen Challenge for J628. We partner with Destiny Rescue in Thailand J280, Philippines J804, … and Cambodia J279.
  • Education, training and mentoring programs for women and girls. Achieving success in typically male vocations may require targeted training and mentoring for women and girls. In Zimbabwe we partner with Kidz Kan Zimbabwe for J757N, in India with Helping Hands Jaipur Society for J651, and in Cambodia with Precious Women J906N. With targeted education and scholarships for young women in STEM courses are our partners Classroom of Hope for J759N and Cambodian Children’s Fund J668.
  • Often educating girls and women means providing day-care for their kids or younger siblings so they can attend school or training such as in Uganda with Watoto for J416, and in Cambodia with Cambodian Children’s Fund for J668. Many other projects adapt their programs to include girls who care for younger siblings to ensure they are not left behind in their own education.
  • Protecting women from the threat of domestic violence and early marriage requires a whole of community response. Our projects include the provision of refuge for women, working with men and women in separate groups, engaging local police in the distribution of information, promoting self defence training for women and girls. In India our partner Great Commission Ministries for J189, and in Cambodia our partners Open Arms for J676, C3 Church for J830N, Sovanapoom Care Church for J846N and Sunshine Cambodia J529N.

Are you involved in the education of women and girls, do you mentor and support women in your workplace, educate boys and men about stereotypes and violence against women, or encourage and promote women towards fulfilling their full potential? In 2017 let’s be bold and continue to work towards a world where women and girls have equal access.

“We cannot succeed when half of us are held back” Malala Yousafzai

Contact GDG on info@globaldevelopment.org.au to find out more about any of these projects.