27e Réunion consultative du Pré-sommet sur l’intégration du genre au sein de l’Union Africaine

Par Nanouche Pemba – The YWCA Democratic Republic of the Congo

Il s’est tenu du dimanche 17 au lundi 18 janvier 2016 à la Commission Economique des Nations Unis pour l’Afrique (UNECA) à Addis-Abeba en Ethiopie, la 27e réunion consultative du pré-sommet « Gender Is My Agenda Campaign » (GIMAC). Cette 27e session a connu la participation des plusieurs femmes issues de la société civile, des organisations non gouvernementales spécialement les délégations de la YWCA, des observateurs nationaux et internationaux, des officiels de la commission de l’Union Africaine et de la commission Economique des Nations Unis.

En effet, c’est sous modération de Madame Hendrina Doroba, Directrice Général du Forum des Educatrices Africaines qu’a lancé l’ouverture, suivi de différents discours des intervenantes, entre autre, l’Initiatrice et fondatrice de « Femmes Africa Solidarité », Madame Bineta Diop, de la première femme ministre de défense du monde Madame Elisabeth Rehn de la Finlande, du Rapporteur Spécial pour les Droits de la femme à la commission de l’Union Afrique Madame Lucy Asuagbor, de la représentante du secrétaire exécutif de la commission Economique des Nations Unis pour l’Afrique Madame Ngone Diop, de la Représentante de la Présidente de la commission de l’union Africaine Madame Fatima Daran commissaire de l’industrie et commerce ainsi que mademoiselle Priscillia Magamba de la YWCA-DRC.

En outre c’est en prélude du sommet de 50 chefs d’Etats et de gouvernement de l’Union Africaine de Janvier 2016 ; que le GIMAC s’est réuni avec les autres organisations pour la question de l’autonomisation de l’Afrique et faire les droits de la femme les principales priorités d’action. Le thème retenu pour cette Année est : perspective 2020 « Assurer les droits des femmes en réalisant l’égalité des genres et en faisant taire les armes en Afrique ».

Par ailleurs, cette 27e session a connu d’une part sept panels dans lequel plusieurs thèmes développés par différentes femmes de la société civile et lié à la déclaration solennelle pour l’égalité de genre en Afrique notamment les droits des femmes en Afrique, la gouvernance, justice, responsabilité, garantir les droits de l’homme pour les jeunes femmes, la situation au Burundi, Faire taire les armes pour 2020 : égalité de genre et Droit de l’homme, promouvoir l’économie inclusive et stable pour le développement de l’Afrique ainsi que comment élaborer un plaidoyer ; A l’issus de ces panels plusieurs résolutions ont été pris par l’assemblée et ce dernier serons présenté par les membres de comité de GIMAC lors du pré-sommet de l’union africaine avec les ministres du genre et des affaires féminines le mardi 19 janvier 2016 au siège de l’Union Africaine .

En somme, ce sommet les réseaux GIMAC a remis le prix de remerciement à l’ancienne ministre de défense finlandaise Madame Elisabeth Rehn et a la ministre de la république du Namibie pour leur lutte en ce qui concerne l’autonomisation et lutte pour les droits des femmes. Toute fois c’est par le mot de remerciement de mes dames Ruth Ojiamba et de Madame Bineta Diop que ce sommet s’est clôturé.

Women’s Position in Tanzania 2015 General Election

By: The YWCA of Tanzania

First time in the history of Tanzania we have women in the top government positions, Hon. Samia Suluhu Hassan who is the newly elected Vice President and Hon. Dr. Tulia Akson Mwansasu who is a newly elected Deputy Parliament Speaker of the United Republic of Tanzania.

This is considered as an achievement after a long struggle to reach gender equality and balance in decision making organs. The Tanzania’s general election was conducted on 25th October 2015. It is the fifth (5th) election since the beginning of multiparty system in Tanzania. People were voting for the President, Members of Parliament and councillors.

The fact that women are the majority of voters and play the important role in the general election as they have more power in choosing leaders who will advocate for their rights. This is supported by testimonies we got from various women and youth that “the courage shown by Hon. Anna Mghwira to compete with very powerful politicians for Presidency is admirable” Asha Mohamed a young woman from Dar es Salaam. “One day I want to run for presidency but I will start with running for Member of Parliament, because I want to show the world that women can do it all” said Jennifa Alphonce a young woman from Dar es Salaam.

The number of women candidates’ has significantly increased over the past five years where by the last election in 2010 there were only 191 women candidates running to be members of parliament, but in 2015 the numbers have increased to 238 women candidates.

The increase of numbers of women is due to the government reaffirming its commitment to the Convention on the Elimination of all forms of Discrimination Against Women (CEDAW) and the Beijing Platform for Action, following the Beijing conference.
However, still there are barriers discouraging women to run for different categories in the elections. These challenges are limited funding to facilitate campaign process, cultural aspects where majority of women are not trusted by community members if they can be leaders, patriarchal systems and gender roles which sometimes limit women to participate fully in campaign process within our society, just to mention the few.
It is a high time to call for positive support for women, so that more of them can run for different posts during the elections. YWCA of Tanzania through Enabling Economic Empowerment is advocating for women and youth to be proactive citizens and take charges of their own challenges to bring changes in their own communities. Through the project thirty two (32) youth where 18 were female and 14 male were trained to become internal observers during the general election on 25th of October 2015. Two young girls were trained by the Nation Election Committee (NEC) as trainers and later they trained their fellow youth to become internal observers.

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Le leadership intergénérationnel et la non-discrimination sont-elles les clefs pour la durabilité de la YWCA ? Mes réflexions sur le 28ème Conseil Mondial

Par Sophia Pierre-Antoine – The YWCA of Haiti

Le 28è12187714_10154541683685190_6558135324623248970_nme Conseil Mondial de la YWCA s’est tenu à Bangkok du 11 au 16 Octobre 2105. En prélude, les jeunes femmes ont eu leur propre Forum les 9 et 10.
Durant le Conseil, Je n ‘ai pas pu m’empêcher d’être éblouie par la présence d’environ 500 femmes, jeunes femmes, et filles de plus de 70 pays; toutes faisant partie du même mouvement, œuvrant pour les droits et le bien-être des femmes et filles. Je fus remplie de ce sentiment d’appartenance et de solidarité extraordinaire. Nous avons sans doute bénéficié quotidiennement de conseils, d’astuces et d’outils pour améliorer et célébrer l’efficacité de nos YWCA et du mouvement mondial !

Si il faut mettre l’emphase sur 2 piliers qui m’ont particulièrement marqués ce sont:

1) Un Leadership intergénérationnel qui tient une gouvernance exemplaire avec un fort sens de responsabilités :
Pour un leadership intergénérationnel « audacieux et transformateur » il faut donner à chacune l’espace pour apprendre, faire des erreurs et en tirer des leçons. Renforcer la politique de la YWCA Mondiale qui stipule qu’au moins 25% du Conseil Administratif de chaque YWCA soit composée de jeunes femmes et que ce pourcentage soit aussi reflété dans le personnel, les volontaires, les membres et les bénéficiaires est clé. Pour que ce modèle, basé sur un mentorat à deux sens fonctionne, les femmes et jeunes femmes doivent travailler ensemble et apprendre les unes des autres en prônant le respect.

2) Un mouvement inclusif et non-discriminatoire :
Avant le Conseil Mondial j’avais été approchée par la YWCA Grande Bretagne pour participer à l’élaboration d’une “Résolution sur la Non-Discrimination”. J’ai répondu positivement. La YWCA Haiti a signé son appui.
La YWCA est basée sur une fondation Chrétienne et sur les Droits Humains, ainsi, pour respecter les valeurs du mouvement, je pense qu’il faut soutenir toutes les femmes en toutes leurs diversités et éradiquer les politiques discriminatoires envers celles dont les expériences de vie sont différentes des nôtres.

D’après moi -comme il l’a été si bien formulé au 28ème Conseil- c’est grâce au leadership intergénérationnel et aux politiques et pratiques non-discriminatoires que le mouvement YWCA pourra avancer, rester pertinent, et attirer les jeunes dynamiques. Ce n’est qu’alors que nous atteindrons la vision audacieuse et transformatrice d’avoir 100 millions de femmes, jeunes femmes, et filles impliquer dans notre mouvement d’ici les 20 prochaines années !

Poem: What I Imagine

Marie Skripec – Member of Committee and Volunteer of the YWCA of Germany

I Imagine12193459_10153724396559284_5214319171336134951_n

I imagine a world

where there are no more armed conflicts,
no more wars
no more people that have to flee from their countries,
have to leave their homes and their beloved behind

I imagine people,

women and men
to stand up
and say that we don’t want people to be killed
we don’t want to support governments and people
that develop cruel strategies
and initiate conflicts and wars
in beautiful countries,
We don’t want any more People and governments
that are responsible for the death of so many people
only
because they seek for more resources, influence and power
claiming to operate in the name of democracy.

I imagine a near future

where we don’t spend our money on weapons, soldiers and armies
but on the protection of our environment, our nature and the people around us
on education and the future of our present and following generations
on mutual exchange and learning from each other
all around the globe

I imagine my country

to take more responsibility
a sustainable Germany
ecologically, economically, socially and culturally

I imagine people

that consumes less
and instead open their eyes
to see all the beautiful things around them
and conserve them:
trees, flowers, birds, butterflies
women, men, girls and boys
neighbours, friends, sisters and brothers

We often say
that we should see the world
through the eyes of a child

I imagine

that we seriously ask children for their opinions
and consider it in our decisions we make
locally, regionally, nationally and globally.

I imagine

children in our governments
parliaments consisting of
male and female leaders of all ages
deciding on our present and future.
learning from and relating to good and bad
practices and experiences in the past.
a flexible parliament
ready to learn permanently
listening to its people and all its variety

I imagine

many raindrops
changing the direction of many rivers
heading towards a just and fair world

I imagine

a world in peace
where we all live as one

What does intergenerational leadership mean to young women? A voice of the Young Women’s Forum

By Yvonne Schüpbach – YWCA YMCA Switzerland

By now we are all familiar with the certain discussion about intergenerational leadership within the YWCA. Often there are just the elderly women who are asked what they think about it. But that changed at this Young Women’s Forum. I was asked, to speak about what I, as a young woman who is 20 years old, think about this issue.

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I have joined the YMCA/YWCA Switzerland when I was very young. I think I was 7 years old. I remember my first scout afternoon program; I was very impressed by the different amazing leaders. They seemed to be self-confident and sure about how the world functions. My leaders seemed to be sure of what the right way is. But then I grew up and I became a leader as well, when I was 13 years old. During this time I discovered that it was not like I thought it would be. Leaders don’t know everything. They are not always sure how the world functions and if they are doing the right thing in the right way.

At this time intergenerational leadership and the older leaders became more important to me. Firstly, they had to give me space and the possibility to participate and be included in decisions. In addition the older leaders of my association became my advisers. They are sharing their experience and expertise with me. They are so important in my leadership development. But it is no one way road. It is a bilateral relationship because sometimes they do not understand the youth and the world we’re living in and then they ask me to share certain things.

Due to this my conclusion is: intergenerational is about share knowledge and space, listen to each other and care about one other. It is beyond dominating. It is beyond being bossy. It is beyond being exclusive. It is about sharing, listening and caring.

So my call to action is: Let the young women participate and be active together with the older. Let us work together as equal partners. And let us use our intergenerational knowledge to be bold and transformative.

UN ENCUENTRO INTERGENERACIONAL

Delia González Medel, YWCA Chile

Ayer, martes 13 de octubre 2015 durante el Consejo Mundial de la YWCA que se realiza en Bangkok, tuve la alegría de participar en el Taller acerca de las Relaciones Intergeneracionales al interior de nuestras YWCA.

Aunque no fue preparado intencionalmente así,  justamente nuestra mesa de expositoras estuvo compuesta por 3 mujeres de distintas generaciones. Asimismo, las participantes del Taller pertenecían a distintos grupos etarios, lo que permitió conocer y compartir preciosas experiencias y preguntas respecto a este gran desafío de la comunicación y colaboración intergeneracional,  tarea que – estando ya en movimiento- se nos hace ineludible.IMG_2823

Las distintas maneras en que las YWCA de Canadá, Aotearoa/Nueva Zelanda y Chile han enfrentado este tema, nos confirma que cada realidad nos convoca a conocer en profundidad a las personas y grupos con quienes trabajamos, en su diversidad y particularidad, acercarnos a las culturas de las que participan y a su situación de vida en el presente, con sus necesidades, creencias  e intereses.

A pesar de los distintos contextos y experiencias compartidas, entre ellas emergieron elementos comunes que no podemos soslayar.

Si bien, tal como fue expresado por mi parte en el Taller, no existen recetas acotadas para producir un encuentro y mejor comunicación entre las generaciones, ya que las relaciones humanas son un entramado complejo de expectativas y de visiones de mundo que se encuentran, sí pudimos apreciar que las tres exposiciones refirieron –como condición básica-  al reconocimiento mutuo en distintas dimensiones, a saber: el valor de la historia de vida individual y colectiva de cada mujer, el ser capaces de recuperar la sabiduría de todas y cada una, acercarnos con respeto y confianza en las capacidades y habilidades de las otras, comprender que el  producto de ello va a ser el enriquecimiento mutuo, y,  para todo  lo anterior, por sobretodo necesitamos tener la decidida y clara convicción y disposición a realizar ese reconocimiento. Es una opción y es una buena nueva.

Tal como lo señalara Marcela Lagarde, la sororidad  como forma de construir nuestras relaciones entre mujeres, implica valorarnos y reconocernos en la diferencia y el enriquecimiento mutuo.

Inspirational World Council Young Women’s Forum

Orliginal source of the blog post: http://worldcouncil.waarbenjij.nu/reisverslag/4873320/lots-of-inspiration-at-the-young-women-s-forum

Friday was an exciting day: it was the first day of the World Council Young Women’s Forum. This Forum takes place before the actual World Council and is meant for young women to meet each other, to network. Wieske and I were present as young women of  YWCA Netherlands. It was a full, but very inspiring day and I would love to share some highlights to give you an impression. 12079225_10153147501087011_7058181459065768060_n

The day started with celebrating faith and diversity. We sang some songs and we reflected on a story from the Bible about the bleeding woman. This woman suffered a lot, but she believed that touching Jesus’ clothes would heal her and she had the courage to get to him through the crowd. This story was connected to the courageous stories we live and we were asked to write our stories of courage down. All these stories together make for a very powerful group of women! After this celebration we introduced each other by guessing which countries were present. It was really amazing to see so many young women represent their countries!

Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs)

An important part of the morning programme consisted of a panel with representation from organizations such as UN Women and UNESCO. They introduced the SDGs: the Sustainable Development Goals, which are targets related to international development. They are the follow-up to the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs) and they will last for 15 years, until 2030. There are 17 goals, ranging from topics like poverty to inequality and the environment. Goal 5 is gender equality, and more specifically: “to achieve gender equality and empower all women and girls”. This differs from the wording in the previous MDGs, which said “promote” instead of “achieve” gender equality. Therefore, this goal is more ambitious than the previous one. Within this goal there are different targets on topics such as: female genital mutilation (FGM), ending all forms of discrimination against women and girls, unpaid care and domestic work and female leadership. They will be implemented with different means and measured by using various indicators. You can find more information on the SDGs on: https://sustainabledevelopment.un.org/topics .

The SDGs are important, because they will be instrumental when it comes to governments deciding what to focus on in their policies. Of course, it’s still up to governments what they choose to focus on but the SDGs are very important in this process. Having a specific goal for gender equality is very important and has been brought about by the work of many activists, feminists and organizations.

After this panel it got really interesting, because the different YWCA regions (North America, Latin America and Caribbean, Europe, Asia, Africa, and Pacific) spoke about the issues they’re facing when it comes to gender inequality. It was very interesting to learn more about the various issues and to notice some similarities between regions. For example, domestic violence is a problem every region has to deal with. Stereotyping is also something that happens throughout the world, even though the stereotypes may differ. It was also good to hear about the issues of fellow European countries and there we also experienced a lot of similarities. After this, the SDGs were connected to “Envisioning 2035”, a YWCA process aimed at envisioning what we want the world to look like in 2035. It’s a bigger plan where YWCAs will work towards to. The goal that was determined for Envisioning 2035 is: “By 2035, 100 million young women and girls transform power structures to create justice, gender equality and a world without violence and war; leading a sustainable YWCA movement, inclusive of all women.” During the next few days at the World Council, we will talk and discuss about this vision and elaborate on it.

Cultural evening

The day ended with a cultural evening, which was amazing! Lots of ladies, especially the Asian and African women, wore their national dress and they looked fantastic! Different countries teached us lovely new songs and dances and there was a really nice atmosphere.

All in all it was an awesome first day. We, the young women of the YWCA Netherlands, are looking forward to an exciting second day at the Young Women’s Forum. 12096637_876238722466910_6091672082935993487_n

During the Council we will also use social media to report on what happens here. You can follow us on Twitter on: http://www.twitter.com/ywcanederland and you can follow us on Facebook via http://www.facebook.com/ywcanederland  .

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