Thursday, March 1, 2012

Empowering Rural Girls

Today, Thursday March 1, UNICEF House was the meeting place for several hundred participants and a panal entitled-  Rural Women: From Invisibility to Agency, including Dr. Michelle Bachelet. Her words, "No work done concerning women without women. No work done with girls without girls" were passionate.
3 Panelists were young rural girls: Theresa (Sierra Leon), Elizabeth (Malawi), Marian (Pakistan). Each one were young "ambassadors" for the cause of equal access to education, free from violence and discrimination.
What a joy for me to meet 3 different French-speaking African women today. Aissa from Cameroon, Christiane from Cote d' Ivoire, and Faye Marie from Senegal. I am curious to become a member of an organization FEMNET which is an NGO that organizes effort of women in English and French West Africa, my home for many years.
When I inquired by email to RSVP this side event to the UNCSW they responded with a first come first serve invitation. I was so pleased that I went and surprised that even lunch was served at no charge.
I left feeling like a real stakeholder invited to be an "actor" in the process. We all do what we can...but we cannot do anything without inviting rural girls and women to the process of their own empowerment.

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