October 14, 2013
I ‘am a social and human rights activist with ten years experience of empowering and supporting marginalized women and girls in Tanzania to access social services. Rural women in my area can not access health care services, there is high maternal and mortality women are illiterate with the leading number of girl child drop out due to pregnancy attributed by unconducive learning environment, and at least 62% have no access to clean and safe water. For example women walk at least 10 km to fetch water that is often dirty, from an unprotected source, such as a stream or scoop hole something that escalates diarrhoea disease which has been the major documented cause of illness, which killed over 120 people in Handeni for the period August to November 2007.
I believe to empower the rural poor women on civic rights so that they can be drivers of their own development, participatory democracy highly depend on citizens in demanding for their rights to participate in the decision-making process at various levels. I have managed to empower women to raise their voice when they find their right to social services is not clear, to ask questions and demand for clarifications and justifications for the actions taken by service providers. I’m at celebrating mu success as for the past three years the situation in social services provision is positively changing.