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Unlocking women's potential:what are the setbacks?

To me, poverty and ignorance among women are some of the main challenges that hinder realization of women’s rights and empowerment. World over, women are the poorest population and the situation is worse in developing countries like Uganda. Many women in rural areas totally depend on their husbands for survival and cannot make any choice or decision concerning their lives and this has a lot of implications. A woman will stay in an abuse relationship and If you ask her why she will say “If I leave him, how will I survive and who will look after my children".

For women and girls in fishing communities, the lack of money to engage in fish trade or any other economic activity places them at a disadvantage leaving them with sex as the only currency for survival. While women in post conflict situation who have lost almost everything, the level of trauma is very high and above all they are poor. This makes them very vulnerable to all sorts of abuse and violence.

That not withstanding, most of our societies or communities are patriarchal and this has created unequal power relations between men and women. Patriarchy accords too much power to men and systematically marginalize women. This patriarchy is also imbedded with in the invisible power of culture. Most of the cultural practices, beliefs, norms and attitudes in our communities perpetuate a lot of injustice to women and undermine their human rights. The most commonly practiced in the communities of Eastern and Northern Uganda is wife inheritance and this has fueled the spread of HIV and AIDS. For women who defy this practice, they loose all their property and are further stigmatized.

That aside, there is the challenge of poor and lack of information and communication infrastructure which makes it hard to mobilize communities especially women.

In order to overcome some of the challenges, grassroots women have been empowered through training to know and reclaim their rights as well as the rights of other women as shared in my previous articles. They have also been encouraged to engage in income generating activities such as group farming and sell the produce to earn some little income as well as us setting up some small business.

All these efforts and initiatives have been shared with the wider community online through blogging and because of this UN Women, social mobilization web platform Say NO - UNiTE to End Violence against Women got interested in the work of grassroots women and requested to partner with them and to share the experience and strategies on gender-based violence issues with a global audience

Likewise, pulse wire online community presents another opportunity for networking and sharing ideas and strategies with other grassroots women leaders from different corners of the world and engaging in collective action.

Comments

AchiengNas's picture

Good points Loyce!

Thank you for sharing your knowledge with us. Indeed ignorance and poverty + cultural believes not forgetting patriarchy have eaten up the potential in women of the developing world especially.
I will not praise Build Africa, but she is a BIG agent for change in Uganda and Kenya. I work here, I know how passionate everyone is involved in implementing developments and change in people's lives. I am happy to be part of the world changers not only in my family, my community, my work place but everywhere I go.
AND I got my job through my efforts in World Pulse. Build Africa trusted that a product of World Pulse does not work for pay but passion for the communities. I am passionate about change.

I am so happy you are in this great community, keep sharing with us my fellow Ugandan.

Beatrice

I believe everybody has the potential to live a better life. Given the Opportunity, Education and Motivation ANYONE can become someone admirable. Nobody is a NOBODY, everybody is SOMEBODY.

loyce's picture

Let us connect

Hi Beatrice,

Ever since I met you on pulse wire, I have always admired you and what you do. I am glad to hear from you and I want to meet you physically so that we can have a chat. My email is kloyce@isis.or.ug or loycek@gmail.com.

Rgds

Loyce

Follow me on twitter:@livelyloyce
My blog:www.loycek.wordpress.com

AchiengNas's picture

Hi Loyce, I am emailing you NOW...

Thank you for your quick response Loyce!

Beatrice

I believe everybody has the potential to live a better life. Given the Opportunity, Education and Motivation ANYONE can become someone admirable. Nobody is a NOBODY, everybody is SOMEBODY.

Stella Paul's picture

Heart warming

Dear Loyce

Of all the things you said, I got stuck on one point: women of the fishing community. I have lived by the sea for nearly 2 years and I saw the women there closely. The amount of hard work they do is amazing,but the level of education is truly appalling. Its heart warming to see you taking up this issue, among others. Wish you much luck and success!

Stella Paul
Twitter: @stellasglobe

loyce's picture

Forgotten cases

A lot really happens in fishing communities and especially the female creature and little intervention if any has been done to support them.

Stella, you are such amazing person! If it wasnt for the pulsewire community, how could I have had the opportunity of interacting with you. Your stories, experiences are so powerful, full of miracles and inspiring!

Follow me on twitter:@livelyloyce
My blog:www.loycek.wordpress.com

zacyrus's picture

Lend a hand, fighting together

Your article is very interresting. I wish to have contact with you. I visited your country in 2008, I met some journalists who cover social event iny kampala. We exchanged many experiences about human right and women empowerment.
Together, we win our battle.
riana

loyce's picture

Dear Riana, You have been to

Dear Riana,

You have been to Uganda, oh that's great, I wish I had known you by then! After all, its never too late. My email address is loycek@gmail.com.

Follow me on twitter:@livelyloyce
My blog:www.loycek.wordpress.com

Anne D.'s picture

Insightful and inspiring

Hi Loyce,
This is a very insightful piece. It’s inspiring to read about the work that you and others are doing to empower women. Thanks for sharing and doing the work that you do.

loyce's picture

Dear Anne, Thank you for your

Dear Anne,

Thank you for your comment and for appreciating the work we are doing.
Welcome to pulsewire! This is an incredible network of powerful grassroots women leaders from across the globe.
Please keep in touch
Rdgs

Loyce

Follow me on twitter:@livelyloyce
My blog:www.loycek.wordpress.com

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