Day: March 8, 2019

Celebrating NNNGO’s Gender-Focused Membership

Celebrating NNNGO’s Gender-Focused Membership

ONYEMAECHI HOPE FOR THE HELPLESS FOUNDATION

Emerged in 2007 to care for the less privileged, give hope to the poor and the helpless, OHHF focuses on good health and well-being; education and poverty; gender equality and women empowerment.

OHHF believes that for women to reach their full potentials there is need for advocacy and sensitization on gender equality, women liberation and access to quality education for the girl child.

The foundation’s achievements could be seen in the areas of Health: Free Medical Check Up/Treatment and Distribution of Insecticide Treated Nets to the less privileged in Enugu and Anambra states; Motherless Babies Home Visitation(Visit to Red Cross Motherless Babies Home Onitsha in Anambra state, 2017); Scholarship Awards with a major focus on widow empowerment cum free medical treatment also in 2017 at Central School Umunevo  Amagunze, Nkanu East LGA Enugu State Nigeria with a record of over one hundred beneficiaries.

On International Women’s Day, Onyemaechi Hope For The Helpless Foundation’s message to women world over, especially to (THAT CAREER WOMAN) is Learn to see criticism, comments and notes from your bosses as an avenue for development. Even if the criticisms sting, move on and become a better YOU. Having a thicker skin is for the best for “no one has time to hold your hands and give you a cookie over every assignment that comes your way”.

PHELYN SKILL ACQUISITION CENTER

Phelyn Skill Acquisition Center aims to create employment, reduce poverty and enhance economic independence among Nigerian women and youths.

Established to tackle the challenge of gender inequality, hunger and poverty, the center is proud to contributing to create free business development courses to enable women improve their skills. In her five years of establishment PSAC has trained, empowered and have a record of well over 3000 beneficiaries across the 36 states of the federation.

With a strong core value in gender justice and fairness, Phelyn Skill Acquisition Center together with her partners (NDE, SMEDAN, NYSC, UNIDO HP LIFE and Youth Alive Foundation) have been able to implement laudable projects on women empowerment which include vocational trainings on production of beaded necklace, hat/fascinators, batik, tie and dye and event decorations. Also through their efforts, PSCA facilitates empowerment programmes on cake/pastries and digital literacy; participated on Women and Web Alliance Project by World Pulse where 60 youth corps members were taught on how to maximize the use of their time with mobile phones without internet access.

CONCLUSION

Gender equality is not only a fundamental human right, but a necessary foundation for a peaceful, prosperous and sustainable world. The 21st century is the century for change and the planet earth is ready. The 21st century woman has to fight to change the status quo that created inequality, the we have always done it this way syndrome, which opines that women must be seen and not heard must be stopped, a change which will radically gain an unprecedented momentum. The time is NOW, the time is ripe for women of all races to come together and be the harbinger of the new change and so it is with a consensus that education is the key for women’s liberation while equal access to health care, decent work, representation in political and economic decision-making processes will fuel the much-needed sustainable economies which would pave way to A BALANCED WORLD for a balanced world would in every way birth a BETTER WORLD.

WOMAN: The Untapped Reservoir

WOMAN: The Untapped Reservoir

Since the existence of human, women have always been the inferior gender. Society over time has placed labels amongst the two genders (man and woman). For men, they are: superior, the provider, the shield and head of the family. While women have been labelled as the: inferior, weak, house/home keeper and child bearer.

Women from past centuries have amazingly changed the world which have in some ways paved way for a better society. During the historical period, several women achieved awesome goals but still remained unequal and inferior to men. The historical woman could not vote, hold an everyday job nor a place in politics. They primarily managed the home front, they were seen and not heard, they had voice but were voiceless.

And so came the gender parity, the fundamental human right.

The Charter of the United Nations, signed in 1945, was the first international agreement to affirm the principle of equality between women and men. Since then, the UN has helped create a historic legacy of internationally-agreed strategies, standards, programmes and goals for women so they could stand as equal partners with men in achieving respect, sustainable development, peace and security.

The United Nations thus declared 1975 through 1985 DECADE FOR WOMEN. Four world conferences on women were held; Mexico City 1975, Copenhagen 1980, Nairobi 1985 and 1995 Beijing Conference. These conferences directed searchlight on a variety of issues affecting the status of women in the society, the issues which include; Violence against women; Women’s Rights; Women’s Reproductive Health et all.

Since those early years, International Women’s Day has thus begun to assume a new global dimension for women in developed and developing countries alike. The growing international women’s movement, which has been strengthened by these four global United Nations women’s conferences, have helped to build support for women’s rights and participation. Celebrated in many countries around the world, IWD is a day for women’s recognition for their social, economic, cultural and political achievements, a day which calls to action for accelerating gender parity for global transformation.

No doubt, the 21st century will be the century of the female gender, that is if the world is indeed ready to embrace this paradigm shift. Women today are much different than historical women. The modern woman is consumed with many obligations, duties and responsibilities. Women are beginning to step out of their historical role of house manager dependents to a more independent, sophisticated gender. The roles of women in the society have significantly changed, goals and opportunities are more abundant for women and the modern woman is taking advantage of them in a positive and healthy way.

Today, women can vote and be voted for; the political space is present (although still narrow); today’s women have career choices and are more diligent so much so that they are beginning to have rising wages. Today, more than 70% of women work full time or part-time paid jobs which contributes an emphatic part of households’ income. Sadly, this social phenomenon is breeding profound changes that carries financial, emotional and psychological implications for both men and women, particularly in a conservative society as ours.

World over, there is increasingly an understanding of the need to unleash the untapped potential of women. There are evidences to show that when women participate even in leadership, the impacts extend far beyond the ordinary.

Common with women all over the world, African women face a variety of social, economic, legal and political constraints. Indeed, some laws somewhere still treat women as MINORS. We hear that in Congo, a woman must have her husband’s consent to open a bank account.

Nigeria, Africa’s most populous nation with approximate 180 million citizens (CIA World Fact Book 2015) recent studies reveal that modern Nigerian women are on the lowest ladder of you name it area. Nigeria with her male dominated environs have women as subordinates and underrepresented, report shows that in the nation’s 8th National Assembly, women occupy just 7 out of 109 Senate seats and only 22 out of 360 seats in the House of Representatives.

Political inclusion for women should be a fundamental aspect of modern democracy in Nigeria and world over and so the female gender must be encouraged. Improved representation of women have massive impacts so much so that testimonies of improved policy changes, more friendly laws (especially for married women), economic growth, sustainable peace and development abound.

Women who successfully combine careers with families have been termed lucky but the irony of life is that all may not come out with such luck, for there is a rise in marital instability as evidently seen in the last two decades; domestic violence; promiscuity; child marriage; human trafficking (International Labor Organization estimates that there are about 20.9 million victims of human trafficking globally, 55% of whom are women and girls).

Be that as it may, women have exceeded much expectations with their numerous hands working magic; a modern day woman can simultaneously work on her laptop, cook in the kitchen, tend to a teary-eyed baby, do laundry and still attend to the sexual needs of her husband. Regardless of all these responsibilities, she strives still to thrive even in her chosen career.

International Women’s Day – An interview with WHYTE SPRINGBOARD INITIATIVE

International Women’s Day – An interview with WHYTE SPRINGBOARD INITIATIVE

To celebrate International Women’s Day, Sylvia Obiajulu Mordi, founder Whyte Springboard Initiative wants to challenge stereotypes that limit women and girls. NNNGO’s correspondent, Olaife Ilori caught up with the game changer for women development, ever confident to voice her views and ideas, read how Sylvia chooses to reject gender-biased attitudes with a strong belief in creating an incredible present and future for the female gender world over.

Follow the conversation:

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Do you think women are well empowered in this 21st century?

 

I would say that women are not well empowered, well I must say there are improvements but a lot still needs to be done, I say this because most times opportunities are taken away from women because the society seem to factor a woman’s personal life with her professional decisions. Also women are only empowered in a particular trend of skills, especially business, trading, cooking, fashion etc. leaving technical and professional skills out and so our foundation is going all out in ensuring that the female gender acquires that empowerment.

What is FEMINISM and why does the world especially the developing nations find it difficult to embrace this movement/advocacy?

 

Feminism is the advocacy for the political, economic and social rights of women, in the sense that the same opportunities given to men should also be made available for women to participate in different spheres of life if they want to rather than being deprived of such opportunities.

Developing countries find it difficult to embrace this advocacy because like the saying goes that CHANGE is difficult to accept and FEAR a bigger obstacle than the obstacle itself. The fear of changing the cultures and the deeply ingrained bias towards women. The fear of changing the long taught norm that men ought to speak out loud while women listen.

 

What does the International Women’s Day Theme 2019, #BalanceforBetter mean to you?

BALANCE FOR BETTER is practically an equal opportunity for men and women. You know the future is just ahead, there is need to build a gender-balanced world that drives a better working world

 

There’ s a stereotype attached to career women. Many women, get caught up on internal i\ssues of what sacrifices they need to make even as they grow in their career. Do you think women get enough support system? In what ways should the society create best support system for career women especially at home without jeopardizing their career?

 

Indeed, there is a misconception that most career women focus more on their career rather than getting married and paying attention to the home front. Women should begin to have enough support system, many abandon their career just because they find it difficult to strike a balance between the home front and career life. The society can help by creating flexible working system for women, while men should become more supportive especially in house hold decisions and chores. Society must also stop prioritizing a man’s career over that of a woman.

 

So many women across the world are still unable to reach their full potentials, how is your foundation working on empowering women?

 

Our foundation is providing a support system by changing the perspective of women through coaching and mentoring to break away from the norm; we want to give them the opportunity to prove themselves in all spheres even in male dominated professions

 

Some 150 years ago, women and all she owned belonged to her father or her husband. How does your organization ensure this practice remains forever buried?

 

Women are striving hard to no longer inherit the silence of their mothers by seeking avenues to be enlightened and empowered. In this light, our foundation is ensuring this practice remains forever buried by supporting women through educating them on knowing their fundamental human right.

 

Women make up 51% of world population. There are no reasons women shouldn’t be able to represent more than 40% of top level jobs and corporate board seats. What is your take on this?

Yes, women should be able to represent more than 40% of top level jobs and corporate board seats. We must accept that change does not happen overnight, it is a gradual process, what matters is that our path are henceforth pointed into a new direction. So many organizations have sprung up and have become catalyst for change for women in this era. So there is hope that in the near future, we will have a good number of female representative in top jobs and corporate board seats.

 

What do you say to that woman who wishes and desires to excel in her career and would want to simultaneously keep an excellent home front?

 

She should stay strong and fearless, everything can be achieved for a determined heart for desires backed by faith knows no such word as IMPOSSIBLE

 

What main change would you like to see for young girls in the next generation?

 

I would want to see more of female participation and equal representation in politics, health, science, ICT and technical skills.

 

On International Women’s Day, what advice would you give to women?

 

They should constantly keep evolving by seeking personal and professional development, seek personal approval rather than societal approval. Dream big and go for it. We all deserve better. Women do not apologize for being fierce and confident, silent the external noise and listen to the voice within you, keep reinventing yourself for relevance.