“Gender equality”, “gender mainstreaming”, “gender-based violence”,... we are all aware about the struggles going on all over the world to fight for Equal Rights for Women and Men. MIJARC, representing the voice of millions of rural young people is attentive to these questions too.
On the context of MIJARC World program 2012, taking place in Sri Lanka, last December, the International Women Commission of MIJARC organised a Women Conference, with the main aim of empowering rural young women socially, politically and economically.
Despite the apparent focus on women, we strived to show the rural young leaders of MIJARC members (women and men), present in this session, that to make any achievements related to gender equality there has to be a joint effort by women and men.
But we decided to go even further and to show that if we want to respect equality, what about men’s perspective? Aren’t they facing challenges themselves too?
We had no better opportunity to do a little research than having so many rural young people from different continents, gathered at the same time in the same place! The days preceding the Conference we interviewed some of them, asking the following questions:
- What are the main challenges for you as women/men, in your daily context?
- How do you hope to overcome those challenges?
- What do you expect from the work of the International Women Commission for the next 4 years, also in order to help you overcoming these challenges?
The interviews’ results were presented during the Conference, but to celebrate the International Women’s Day 2013 we would like to make them available for all of those who couldn’t be present in the conference and for those who were there, in order to remind everybody how important it is to respect each other and work together to achieve real equality.
But...yes! We still want to go further! Wouldn’t be great to have more testimonies and make a very nice documentary showing the realities of local rural young women and men?
Bellow you will find the photos of the interviewed and you can hear their answers by clicking on the link next to it.
Even if women perform 60% of the work in the world, they earn only one tenth of the income and possess but one hundredth of the goods available. Often their scholastic formation is very limited or even non-existent: Two thirds of the illiterates above the age of fifteen (about one billion) are women. Even those who have received formation find it very difficult to find employment. Apart from that women have to cope with situations of discrimination and violence. Due to the simple fact of being women, they encounter numerous difficulties as soon as they want to occupy a position of power or decisions making. We must admit that even within MIJARC there is inequality between men and women.
The evaluation of the work carried out during the international seminar in India in 1996 made members understand that although women who work at lot at the local level, they are not really integrated in the responsibilities at the national and international levels. They do not often participate during the international programmes and are often put at the second level. While our movement is aiming at building up a society where solidarity prevails, and where youth are not excluded, we have not been able to give women equal opportunities within our movement. This pushed the World Assembly in Madras to decide to create an international working group of women.
The international women commission is composed of one women representative from each continent, plus one member of the World Team. Almost all the continents elected new women representatives in 2004, old and new women representatives have been participating to the Commission in order to guarantee the transmission.
- to enable women living in rural areas to take responsibilities in the movement
- to enable women to analyse gender differences, especially in the movement and in rural areas
- to provoke changes with regard to stronger participation of women within the movement, in the villages/society and in development projects
- to enable women to elaborate plans of action with groups and organize the follow up
download information women commission