Every March it is time to speak up, to raise our voices as women.
March 8 is celebrated as the International Women’s Day every year and the theme for this year is “Think equal, build smart, innovate for a change” under the campaign “Balance for Better.”
The German Development Cooperation (GIZ) supports the EAC to promote gender equality in all its policies and interventions to advance inclusive regional integration process.
To celebrate this year’s event, GIZ-EAC together with the East African Community convened a half a day event at the EAC Building, Arusha, Tanzania. The event featured a moderated interactive Session with specific discussion on cross border mobile platform for maternal health in Burundi and Rwanda, new frontier for promoting tourism for women in the region, African women at the forefront of sustainable water, food and energy nexus, women in forex trade business and financial facility for women economic empowerment in the region.
The event also had a mini expo on innovation that showcased solar technology, colored gemstones making, coffee innovative processing, beads making and handmade products. Women participating in the EAC Women's Day event were given the opportunity to go for a breast cancer checkup, and there was also an opportunity for them to open their own bank account.
During the Celebration, Dr. Kirsten Focken, Cluster Coordinator, GIZ-EAC emphasized that to contribute to the achievement of gender equality, maintaining women’s health, increasing access to finance for women, protecting women’s rights and supporting education for women and girls are fundamental pillars. All these together enable women to undergo a change of mind, do something innovative and smart. Also IIDEA puts a special focus on strengthening women entrepreneurs in the region. Check the IIDEA Partner Projects for more information: https://www.eaciidea.net/partners/
The event called upon the policy makers to investigate where laws and regulatory environments facilitate or hinder gender equality, women’s economic participation, and develop specific innovative approaches and interventions to remove the barriers to promote women’s equality and equity in the region.