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Women’s empowerment through sharing information

The power of women coming together to share information and express themselves to increase development. Photo by Duncan Kakumirizi.

In December 2021, Youth Care Group Network International (YCGNI) embarked on a GRRIPP project in Uganda to empower women to share and express themselves as a means to increase development. The plan has been successful in increasing the knowledge and confidence in information sharing among the women in rural areas.

Knowledge and ideas shared by women strengthen the knowhow around advancing gender equality and empowerment. In YCGNI’s women’s empowerment program, through sharing, we focused on GRRIPP themes, looking at how information sharing can enhance women’s resilience to environmental hazards and climate change.

This program supported the development of knowledge among women who were initially critical of, or felt excluded from, certain resilience and development initiatives – for instance, the development of income-generating activities. The sharing of information about these activities helped to highlight and examine the root causes of discriminations and inequalities experienced by women at the intersection of social identities. Discussions focused on what needs to change to foster development, well-being, and resilience. From information and experience-sharing, many women discovered that certain oppressive characteristics of traditional African culture – especially the marriage and inheritance norms that favour men – are still a hindrance to women empowerment.

Sharing of information and experiences among the women also helped the group to generate meaningful insights into considerations around gender-responsive disaster risk awareness. For example, in discussions the women realised that drought and famine – which occur especially between November to March – can impact heavily on women more than men. This is due to the negative impact of drought and famine on food availability, and the fact that women tend to shoulder more domestic food preparation responsibilities and will forgo food first in times of shortage. Hence, there is a need for families to learn traditional food preservation methods, as well as the wider need for the development of sustainable and resilient infrastructure in humanitarian, political, economic, and social spheres.

By supporting information sharing through workshops among the very local and informal women’s groups you can get to the root of the causes and experiences of gender inequality – as you hear information right from the mouths of the local women. The solutions given through these information sharing activities are very practical because they are from the bottom up. For instance, one recommendation that came from a group discussion was that women associations should support pregnant women within the community with basic child delivery requirements, and elderly women should take responsibility to mentor the girl children.

Information sharing by these women can also help to create advocacy programs for organisations and for local governments to change policies and budgets. The kind of information shared is critical to governments planning for disaster preparedness and disaster risk solutions as well as a local development agenda. When women come together to share, it can lead to the formation of women’s associations and networks, which can empower individuals and groups in different aspects. Women can feel more motivated to start developmental activities and fight for their rights.

There is Power and Impact when women come together - 'whether they are investing time, support, money, or more in one another; when women come together, everyone wins’. So, there is a need to enable and encourage women world over to invest in sharing with one another to experience the true meaning of women empowerment.

Vincent Nyero

Assistant Executive Director of Youth Care Group Network International and part time program manager of Light Empowerment Foundation Uganda.

(YCGNI is a GRRIPP Africa Partner)

Author Bio

Vincent Nyero studied a Bachelor of Social Sciences, Economics and Political Science from Islamic University in Uganda in 1996 – 1999, and a diploma in education from Kyambogo University 2001- 2003. Vincent has also obtained a certificate in Law from law development center Kampala in 2005, a Masters degree in Education Management and Human Resource Development from Uganda Management Institute 2006 – 2008. Formerly a teacher of Mbale senior secondary school 2004- 2006, Head Teacher of Nkokonjeru view secondary school and Greenland Green land high school in Mbale 2008- 2011. Vincent has also worked as assistant examinations specialist locally and internationally. Currently Assistant Executive Director of Youth Care Group Network International and part time program manager of Light Empowerment Foundation Uganda.


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