Women empowerment: Live it to believe it! Turning ordinary into extraordinary

By YVONNE MAVUNO
LODWAR, TURKANA CENTRAL

Women are great at building a relationship,empowering others, turning into people’s needs, and balancing a staggering number of responsibilities skills that are great assets, not liabilities, in the workplace.

Turkana women. PHOTO: GREG AKALL

Turkana women. PHOTO: GREG AKALL

In a small village in Lodwar known as Napetet, Meet Ann who started life by selling
porridge with mandazi to high school teach-
ers, mechanics, engineers, bodaboda riders
and anybody she met on her way. Before she
got married, her prospective husband didn’t
even own a house. He slept in the church
compound. Ann never lost hope, she got
married to the same man. Now, she owns her
supermarket, anything she wants she finds
it easy.
Economically, more women than men live in poverty.Economic disparities persist partly
because much of the unpaid work within families and communities falls on the shoulders of women and because they face discrimination in the economic sphere. Despite many international agreements affirming their human rights, women are still much more likely than men to be poor and illiterate.

They usually have less access than men to medical care, property ownership, credit, training and employment. They are far less likely than men to be politically active and far more likely to be victims of domestic violence.
The ability of women to control their own fertility is fundamental to women’s empowerment and equality. When a woman can plan her family, she can plan the rest of her life. When she is healthy, she can be more productive. And when her reproductive rights including the right to decide the number, timing and spacing of her children, and to make decisions regarding reproduction free of discrimination, coercion and violence are promoted and protected, she has freedom to participate more fully and equally in society.
Experience has shown that addressing gender equality and women’s empowerment requires strategic interventions at all levels of programming and policy-making. Here are three things every woman can do to propel yourself forward: Be yourself. Trust your instincts. Embrace mistake.






Leave a Reply